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“Never seen him play” – Wayne Bennett’s shock Lewis Dodd claim

Lewis Dodd South Sydney Wayne Bennett

Despite being pinned as the heavy favourite to take over at South Sydney Rabbitohs for 2025, Wayne Bennett has claimed that he has never seen the Bunnies’ reported star signing Lewis Dodd play.

It would be either an incredible oversight by South Sydney to sign a young half-back to a four-year deal without the say-so of their incoming head coach, or it could be a brilliant lie from Bennett who is a wily old fox.

Of course, Lewis Dodd to South Sydney isn’t yet official but former St Helens star James Graham has claimed that the deal is done, with Graham claiming: “He’s gone” when speaking on the NRL360 show.

Graham’s revelation came from the fact that he had spoken to St Helens CEO Mike Rush with the former Saint also reasoning that Dodd wouldn’t sign if he didn’t know who his coach would be.

Despite that, Bennett is playing it cool by making the extraordinary claim that he has never seen Lewis Dodd play.

“I don’t know anything about him. I know nothing,” the former England head coach said, per The Daily Telegraph.

“Kristian (Woolf, Dolphins assistant coach) asked me about him the other day but I don’t know him.

“I don’t know anything about Dodd so how could I think anything about him? I have never seen him play.

“I had nothing to do with it. It wasn’t my decision.”

Who is Lewis Dodd?

St Helens star Lewis Dodd has been linked with a move from Super League to the Dragons

Credit: SWpix

At just 22 years of age, Lewis Dodd still has plenty of learning to do but he’s also a prodigious talent with a huge number of accolades already achieved in his short career.

The biggest of those is surely his game-winning drop goal to secure the World Club Challenge in 2023 with Dodd’s kick splitting the uprights to mark a remarkable comeback from the youngster.

Dodd had missed much of the 2022 campaign after a season-ending injury sustained against Wigan Warriors but he bounced back from it in incredibly strong fashion.

The playmaker followed up that World Club Challenge performance with a 2023 campaign to remember that saw him make 32 appearances for the Red Vee.

Those performances and that amazing 2023 World Club Challenge showing have clearly caught the eyes of the NRL given the reports that he will pen a four-year deal with the Bunnies at the end of the season.

Will Lewis Dodd be a success in the NRL?

Lewis Dodd South Sydney Rabbitohs

Credit: Imago Images

Could Lewis Dodd succeed in the NRL though? James Graham seems to think so after getting hands-on experience with the 22-year-old during his final year at St Helens.

Graham would go as far as to suggest that Lewis Dodd “could be England’s greatest” when asked about how the half would fare down under.

“Lewis Dodd would be a fantastic addition,” Graham said on the Sunday Sin Bin podcast.

“This kid is all quality and all class. When I went back over to play with St Helens in 2020, he would have been at maybe 18 at the time.

“In training when the first 13 play against the reserves, and the reserves throw some shape at you and test you defensively. Well, this kid was all over us at times and was a real handful.

“You could see there was something about him and I remember thinking ‘This kid’s going to go places’ and he’s had a fantastic career over there.

“We saw him come over here and play in the World Cup Challenge, go to Penrith, kick the game-winning field goal in a World Cup Challenge. He’s had an amazing career so far.”

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