St Helens Chairman Eamonn Mcmanus has announced that they have accepted ‘an acceptable offer ‘ from NRL side North Queensland Cowboys and the deal to transfer him to the Cowboys for 2019 will be announced by the Australian club when formalities are finalised .
Barba arrived at the Totally Wicked Stadium towards the end of last season from French Rugby Union side Toulon and was an instant success with Saints fans . He is currently this years Super League topscorer with 26 tries, as he helped his side win the league leaders shield , and is also a frontrunner to be crowned Man of Steel .
Barba was part of the Cronulla side that was crowned Champions Down Under in 2016 but then he was banned for 12 games after failing .a drugs test , testing positive for Cocaine . His move to rugby union meant he escaped a ban as it only applied to the 13 a side code . Barba though had to serve the ban on his return to Rugby League and this delayed his St Helens debut .
Barba put out a statement saying ‘”Playing for St Helens has been a wonderful experience and I’m appreciative of the understanding and compassion in allowing me to return to his Australia.’
Saints tried to keep their prize asset with Coach Justin Holbrook saying ‘We would have loved to have kept Ben for next season but he wants to return home and to the NRL. It is hard to stop that from happening but it hasn’t affected himself or the team with this decision.’