With a coach for 2021 locked in, the Canterbury Bulldogs now need the roster and have re-signed duo Brandon Wakeham and Raymond Faitala-Mariner.
Both Wakeham and Faitala-Mariner have signed new two year deals until the of 2022.
Wakeham, a Chester Hill Hornets junior, has shown some promise and emerges as a halves talent moving forward.
For Faitala-Mariner, a Kiwi international, hard work pays off as he is now a regular in the starting back-row.
The Bulldogs aim moving forward is to surround their side with quality and depth across all positions.
“As part of our focus on developing quality and depth in our playing squad, we are delighted that we have been able to keep two talented young players at Belmore for the next two seasons,” said club CEO Andrew Hill.
“Wakeham is a local junior who has shown the talent he has at both NRL and International level with Fiji.
“While Faitala-Mariner is the type of hard-running forward that provides us with great energy whenever he is on the field.”
Hill expects both players to be successful at the club over the next couple of seasons.
“Both players are part of a long term plan to make sure that we keep bringing quality young players through our system and continue to develop them as they form the nucleus of our squad going forward,” Hill continued.
“We are confident that both players will have a major impact for the club in the seasons ahead.”
Francis Molo crashed over with ten minutes to go but his efforts proved to be little more than a consolation try for the Cowboys.
The luckless North Queensland fans in attendance were treated to the sight of Hamiso Tabuai-Fidow in full flight, gliding his way downfield in an impressive 80-metre run.
Unfortunately, his efforts were unrewarded.
Following the match, Manly coach Des Hasler was pleased with his team’s efforts, directing praise to his side’s ability to ‘weather a couple of difficult patches’ throughout the match when the Cowboys gained momentum.
Despite the loss, Josh Hannay remained upbeat in his first press conference as head coach. He said that his team’s performance was encouraging, but just not enough to get the job done on the night.
“I’ve been harping on the need to become more consistent around the tough parts of the game… we need to make sure that the last fortnight’s effort and attitude are the standard for us for the rest of the year” Hannay stated.
With tonight’s victory Manly will sneak back into the top eight, while the Cowboys remain in twelfth position.
Both clubs will now enjoy an eight day turnaround with the Sea Eagles playing against the Panthers and the Cowboys facing off against Canberra next Saturday night.
NRL News Player of the Match:
3 Points – Cade Cust – One try and a try assist was enough for Cust to secure the player of the match honours. He’s been exceptional since taking the place of Dylan Walker and will certainly challenge for the starting role moving forward.
2 Points – Addin Fonua-Blake – His addition was somewhat controversial, but there’s no doubting that Manly are a much better side with Fonua-Blake on the pitch. He racked up 228 metres on 17 runs to go along with 33 tackles.
1 Point – Jason Taumalolo – Taumalolo put in a typically tough performance tonight, putting the team on his back for 212 metres on 22 carries in addition to 43 tackles.
The Canterbury Bulldogs needed some backline firepower and they have found it, signing Nick Cotric from the Canberra Raiders.
With speed, size and a try-scoring knack, Cotric has signed on at the Bulldogs for three seasons from 2021.
With 37 tries so far in his 80 games, Cotric has also represented both NSW and Australia so far in his career.
On the back of the signing of Luke Thompson, the Bulldogs are confident they are headed in the right direction once more.
“Signing a player of Nick’s ability and class is a massive boost for our club moving forward and another step in strengthening our squad to lead us into the future,” said Bulldogs CEO Andrew Hill.
With Luke Thompson having joined us and Nick now bringing some great strike power to our backline, I am confident that we are constructing the quality of squad that can produce the results we are looking for in the coming seasons.”