Inside Wests Tigers’ “aggressive” transfer policy as they reportedly chase Wigan Warriors star

Wests Tigers appear to be the transfer centre of rugby league at the moment.

They are making headlines through the reported swap deal which will see former Salford Red Devils halfback Jackson Hastings leave for the Newcastle Knights as David Klemmer moves the other way.

Furthermore, more they are chasing Wigan Warriors backrow John Bateman and are prepared to pay $250,000 to secure his services.

Tigers chairman Lee Hagipantelis has opened up on the club’s transfer business speaking to SEN radio in Australia.

“We have a list management committee at the moment, Tim Sheens and Benji Marshall sit on that committee of course. They’ve devised what I would consider to be a very forensic and strategic recruitment and retention program,” he said.

“Sheens and Marshall are in the market at the moment and vigorously and aggressively implementing that program.

“We came last this year, we took home the wooden spoon for the first time in our history, and that was unacceptable.

“We cannot allow that to happen again. Difficult decisions have been made and will continue to be made. I cannot make any apologies for that.

“Tim and Benji have our full support, so these gentlemen have devised this program and identified the type of players we need to move this club forward.

“They’re actively recruiting these players… I have complete confidence and faith in these men, we are very confident and very comfortable with where we sit and where we are heading.

“One thing Tim said to me the other night – you will not recognise the Wests Tigers in 2023.”

It stands to reason that this “vigorous” and “aggressive” approach has been behind their pursuit of Bateman but also the harshness of moving Hastings on after a pretty successful first year at the club.

The approach particularly seems to ring true of Bateman. The club made an initial pursuit of him earlier in the year but things stalled over a fee.

However, this change to their recruitment policy making them a move “aggressive” entity likely saw the club change their mind and agree to the fee as reports suggest.

In fact, the Daily Telegraph this morning reported that the deal was “close” to happening for Bateman.

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