NRL club Newcastle Knights announced yesterday that they had made agreements with Wigan’s Kai Pearce-Paul and Huddersfield’s Will Pryce for the 2024 and 2025 seasons.
Pearce-Paul leaves Wigan after joining from London Broncos and is coming off the back of a try on debut in the World Cup where he represented Shaun Wane’s England.
Meanwhile Pryce has flourished at the John Smith’s Stadium, forging what looks set to be an excellent career in the same path that his dad, Leon, did, as he became a megastar of the British game.
“As a lover of Super League I think it’s disappointing that we’re losing our best talents, but it’s inevitable,” said Craig Harrison on Show Me The Money TV.
“I’m going to be involved in deals like that myself so I can’t stand here and say that I want them to stay in Super League because these young men have got dreams, and if they get an opportunity to play in the biggest comp in the world then they’re going to do so.
“It’s up to our game and IMG to make them stay and at the moment it’s a losing battle. We shouldn’t be losing our top young talent in the game. The game doesn’t allow, with the salary cap, for you to keep these young men within a cap sport.”
Harrison is of course referring to IMG’s partnership with the RFL which is set to focus on “maximising” the game’s value.
It was announced in October that the IMG proposals had been approved by a vote among clubs and the management company’s ‘Reimagining Rugby League’ recommendations to maximise the game which are set to be gradually introduced.
Harrison concluded: “Good luck to both players. IMG and the clubs need to really address it, if they’re going to do it (abolish or raise the salary cap), if not then let it be inevitable that this (loss of Super League talent) will happen.
“I think it was always happen while we’ve got a salary cap at £1.8 million.”