St George Illawarra have expanded their options for their halves by acquiring Ronald Volkman from the Warriors to contend with Kyle Flanagan for a starting position. The 21-year-old Kiwi joins the team after they were rejected by two other options, Tom Dearden and Jack Welsby. In addition, incumbent 6 Junior Amone is likely to have his contract deregistered due to an assault conviction. Volkman previously played at the Roosters, but never made a first grade appearance there before switching to the Warriors, where he played five times last year without establishing himself. He made his international debut for Samoa in the recent Pacific Championships and has been a reserve grade standout for several years. The Dolphins have entered the market for the first time this off-season, signing Wests Tigers winger Junior Tupou for the 2025 season. The Tonga international was one of the brighter players in a poor 2023 for the Tigers but has chosen to leave the club at the end of his contract and move to Redcliffe. The Dolphins previously announced the signing of Solomon Alaimalo from Super Rugby. Alaimalo will join the NRL club in the new year after joining the Top 30 squad under new coach Benji Marshall. Manly has secured one of their most promising players, Haumole Olakau’atu, with a massive eight-year contract as a strike edge forward. The Tonga international is known as one of the most powerful ball-runners in the game and is now tied to the Sea Eagles for the long term. He has played 73 games in his NRL career and will stay at Brookvale until 2031, with an increase in his wage for 2024 and 2025 before this new contract takes effect. In other backrower news, Kurt Capewell has permanently moved to New Zealand, joining the Warriors immediately from the Broncos on a three-year deal. The Queensland star has been linked with the Kiwis at the end of his contract, and Brisbane has allowed him to leave early to join his new teammates for 2024. The Warriors have made further moves by securing new deals for centre Rocco Berry and backrower Jackson Ford, extending their contracts until the end of 2026 and 2025, respectively. The Warriors had previously signed Tohu Harris through a one-year extension that will likely see him end his career with the club. The inspirational forward turns 32 in January and will remain at the club until the end of 2025. The Sydney Roosters have retained Sitili Tupouniua with an extension until the end of 2027. In addition, they announced a three-year deal for last year’s standout backrower, Nat Butcher, and extended the contract of rookie Siua Wong. Canberra has extended star halfback Jamal Fogarty with a two-year deal that will keep him in the capital until the end of 2026. Meanwhile, the Newcastle Knights have tied down a key member of their pack with Jacob Saifiti by extending his contract until the end of 2027.

By admin