Retaining young, up and coming players is something that all clubs look to aim for and the Wests Tigers have done just that, re-signing in-form centre Tim Simona for 2 more years, NYC young gun Nathan Brown for three years, NYC captain Kyle Lovett for a further 2 years and talented junior Matt Woods also re-signing for three more years.
Simona, who was off-contract at the end of the season and targeted by a number of rival clubs, made his debut in 2011 and has enjoyed a recent run of form of late, scoring 5 tries in 9 games, with the centre, just 22, excited to be staying with the club.
â€œThis is the club I want to establish myself at. Iâ€™ve been given a great opportunity this season under Mick Potter and am playing some of my best football under him now,” Simona said.
â€œAlthough I’ve been happy to play on the wing, I want to cement a permanent starting position in the centres over the next few years.â€
Despite his recent surge in form, Tigers coach Mick Potter believes that there is even more room Pokies for the talented Simona to grow into.
â€œWe are only just starting to see what Tim has to offer. He has been in terrific form and deserves his new deal,â€™â€™ Potter said.
â€œIâ€™m very much looking forward to developing Timâ€™s game more over the next few years. It is exciting to think how much he still has to offer.â€
Additionally, the club has taken up the option for Marika Koroibete for the 2014 season, so Tigers fans can once again see the Fijian flyer in action.
With the departure of Blake Ayshford, a potential spot opened up and it has now been filled, with former Newcastle Knights utility Keith Lulia signing on at the club for 2 years.
With a desire to return home for family reasons, Potter says the club looks forward to having the experienced veteran at the club.
â€œKeith recently expressed a desire to return home for family reasons and comes to Wests Tigers for the opportunity to play in the NRL again,” Potter said.
â€œAt 26, Keith will add experience and depth to a squad that has a heavy focus on youth.â€