Maloney still open to Super League switch with Leeds and Catalans interested

Penrith half-back James Maloney is keeping his options open after his world class performance in Origin II.

The 33-year-old earned a surprise recall for New South Wales last week and produced a masterclass to help his state level the series.

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Despite this, the veteran half-back is still open to offers from Super League for next season with Leeds and Catalans reported to be interested.

Maloney, who is backing himself to play until he’s 36, has a deal with the Panthers until the end of 2020 but could move early if a longer deal is offered elsewhere.

“It’s nice to be back with the Blues and playing, but it doesn’t change my overall outlook with what I do moving forward,” he told The Sydney Morning Herald.

“I’m not actively looking, but I’d be silly not to look at something if it popped up. I’ve only got 12 months left at Penrith. I always felt my time over here [in the NRL] would be done after that.

“You have to wonder if those [Super League] options will be available next year. I wouldn’t do a one-year deal over there. It would have to be two or three. My body would be fine over there.”

Leeds Rhinos have been linked with Maloney, however they are unlikely to make a move until they guarantee Super League status for next season.

The other leading candidates are Catalans and reports suggest Maloney could be attracted to the warmer climate in France, with the Dragons general manager Alex Chan saying they would “definitely be interested.”

“It would be silly not to show interest in a player like him,” said Chan. “He’s a proven winner, as everyone says, and he’s a bloody good player.

“We’re on the Mediterranean, we’ve got the lifestyle, the love of the game and chance to experience another culture.”

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