Heading into their clash with Newcastle this weekend, the Canberra Raiders have received a boost with in-form centre Blake Ferguson re-signing with the club, until the end of the 2015 NRL season.
With an option in his contract for the 2014 season, Ferguson made the choice to take that option as well as extend his contract through until 2015.
Despite some earlier off-field issues, Ferguson is back in the Raiders starting side and playing well but knows he has a lot of hard work to do, in order to reach the goals he wants.
â€œIâ€™m very excited. Itâ€™s good news for me extending until 2015 and Iâ€™m very happy with it,â€ Ferguson said.
â€œI just want to keep moving forward with some of the things Iâ€™ve been working on both on and off the field.â€
With Canberra now his home, the decision to stay in the nation’s capital was an easy one for the centre.
â€œIâ€™ve got plenty of mates here in Canberra and Iâ€™ve just bought myself a property down in Woden, so it feels like home in Canberra and I donâ€™t want to leave,â€ he said.
â€œThe clubs been really good to me over my time here and I want to repay them by playing well and being a part of a team thatâ€™s going well.
â€œWeâ€™ve got some great players here at the club and its exciting times, thereâ€™s plenty of young talent coming through and I know we can be a team can make the finals if we keep working hard each week.â€
With life away from football still a potential distraction, Ferguson says he is working hard on that part of his life but he will continue working on both it and his on-field game.
â€œIâ€™ve been doing plenty of things outside of football to help me and Iâ€™ve been working with the coaches and senior players to make sure Iâ€™m focussed,â€ he said.
â€œIâ€™ve been working with some counsellors as well to talk about a few things and theyâ€™ve been giving me some tools to work on outside of footy which has been a huge help.â€
What might come as a surprise to some, however, is the fact that in his contract, Ferguson has a clause that will enable him to leave the club should current coach David Furner leave the club.
â€œIt is always pleasing when the player indicates he is keen to re-sign and stay at the Club and thatâ€™s exactly what Blake said a few weeks ago. This is a sign of the feeling of unity within the Club,” said Raiders CEO Don Furner.
“Blake and Bobby only spoke to the Raiders and made it clear that he was happy in Canberra and did not want to shop around to other Clubs, provided we came up with the right deal, which I am glad to say we did.
â€œHeâ€™s one of the most exciting talents in the game at the moment and we want him to continue to improve as a player and a person.â€