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Wests Tigers look to add another player as they close in on John Bateman deal

In the transfer saga that has rumbled on for much of the off-season it seems that NRL side Wests Tigers will finally get their man and that’s John Bateman, whom they’ve reportedly pursued over the past few months.

And with that deal very close, they’re looking to add another player in the hopes to avoid the ‘wooden spoon’ for a second consecutive season.

The player that Wests are keen to add alongside Bateman is Cronulla centre Jesse Ramien, with the 25-year-old off contract at the end of the season and it’s reported as a two horse race between Wests and new boys the Dolphins for his signature.

The Daily Telegraph in Australia are reporting that it’s between the two favourites for the ‘wooden spoon’ as to where Ramien will sign with talks having been prolonged on account of the uncertainty around the NRL salary cap.

It was announced yesterday that the salary cap was to be set at $12.1 million, an increase of 25% on 2022, and with that confirmed allocation of funds deals across the league can be expected to happen thick and fast over Christmas as sides try to tie down their players.

The news of the salary cap being confirmed also speeds up Wests signature of John Bateman who reportedly is keen to return down under for another crack at the NRL.

Bateman joined Canterbury in 2020 but midway through the 2021 season, after having been named as second-rower of the year in 2020, he signed back with Wigan Warriors but he looks close to returning down under now.

Michelle Bishop of 7NEWS earlier this off-season told SEN that the Bateman deal was as good as done but Wests had been trying to snag Mitchell Moses from Parramatta as well which had caused hold up.

With the Eels sticking firm on Moses and the salary cap now being confirmed it’s expected that in the coming days we may see Bateman announced as the NRL’s newest recruit.

It was reported earlier this year after the World Cup that his partner and young child had already moved to Australia in anticipation of the move so it’s clear that the second-rower clearly felt the deal would materialise, he’s maybe just had to wait slightly longer than expected.

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