He was being courted by rival clubs, but Eels club stalwart and long-serving player Ben Smith, officially re-signing a 2-year deal with the Parramatta Eels.
The decision will see Smith remain a one-club man, and since he made his debut 9 years ago in 2003, the centre-come-back-rower, has turned into one of the Eels most consistent forwards.
Eels coach Stephen Kearney sees the re-signing as a boost for the Eels club, both on and off the field.
â€œBenâ€™s a fine example of the type of player we want at this Club,â€ Kearney said.
â€œHeâ€™s a huge part of the culture weâ€™re building here and thatâ€™s thanks to his positive attitude and his work ethic.
â€œOn and off the field he is someone our guys look up to and his presence has a big effect on the group â€“ his leadership is a major part of what makes him such a valuable player.â€
The Werris Creek junior is currently injured, having suffered a torn pectoral muscle during the pre-season trials – but he was excited to commit his future to the Eels, despite their difficult start to 2012.
â€œItâ€™s hard for people to see at the moment due to our results but thereâ€™s something really special being built here and Iâ€™m just glad I can be part of it,â€ Smith said.
â€œI love the Club and Iâ€™ve been here my whole career, so Iâ€™ve got some great memories growing up playing footy hereâ€¦ but what Iâ€™m most excited about are the next couple of years.
â€œI wouldnâ€™t be re-signing if I didnâ€™t believe in what Steve is doing and the plan weâ€™ve got.
â€œWeâ€™re all frustrated with our start to the season but I know weâ€™ll come out the other end a better side, and Iâ€™m really looking forward to it.â€