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Super League club “working through a whole bunch” of deals

Leeds Rhinos stadium in Super League

Rugby league news and Super League news has been dominated by transfer talk lately especially after big announcements from Leeds Rhinos, Wigan Warriors, Warrington Wolves and Hull KR whilst St Helens, Hull FC and Huddersfield Giants are all linked with big transfers.

But also key is keeping your current players who are out of contract at present.

Leeds have the likes of Blake Austin, James Bentley and Zane Tetevano out of contract.

This week Rohan Smith was asked about these players and he said:

“Yeah, we’re still working through. There’s a bunch of decisions still to be made and we’ll announce those in time.

“Yeah, recruitment and retention is a sort of simultaneous process. So there’s no strict timescale. Next season doesn’t start until February, but we know we have to work through those.

“There’s some decisions that are pressing and imminent, others can evolve in time and as I’ve said, those that are off contract have got the opportunity to look elsewhere also. That’s the nature of the competition and the nature of the system.”

Interestingly, Leeds have been handing out new deals but to players already tied down such as Nene MacDonald, Sam Lisone and Ash Handley.

On this Smith explained:

“I think it’s important to lock people in that are part of the 3, 4, 5 year journey that we’re on here. It’s difficult once players are off contract and it’s open slather, that’s when things can get messy.

“But in the end, the player also has the right to wait and be off contract if he wants to. So it’s a two way street there. Players want to stay, they want to secure their future and we want to do that as well.

“A lot of our younger players have earned the right to get an extension and an upgrade on their current figures. So we’re happy to do that.”

He confirmed that there are more players the club are looking to tie down as well:

“Yeah, we’re working through a bunch of extra extensions and for those people that are going to be here for long term it’s important that we secure them and get them to feel like Leeds is home.”

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