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‘It was like hugging a corpse’ – coach opens up on Super League target’s surprising transfer

Connor Watson will be a Sydney Roosters player in 2022, but that was a decision which he did not take lightly – according to current boss Adam O’Brien.

The Newcastle Knights head coach Adam O’Brien was honest when talking about the transfer, saying “it was like hugging a corpse” when embracing Watson on the training field.

25-year-old Watson had been linked with a move to the UK Super League, but eventually found himself back where it all started – at the Sydney Roosters.

The utility man signed a two-year deal, but it wasn’t an easy thing to do according to O’Brien.

“One of the mornings last week I could see how much this was weighing him down,” O’Brien said.

“I remember giving him a hug, it was like hugging a corpse.

“I care about him, he’s a good person. He’s a good human being, he’s a credit to his family.

“It’s a hard decision but we only get one life, and I’m proud of him in a way, too.”

Watson made his NRL debut with the Roosters, registering 38 appearances across the 2016 and 2017 seasons before signing for the Knights.

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