Instead of winding down his career, veteran ex-Test prop Ben Hannant has kickstarted it again by re-signing with NRL club North Queensland for another year.
Hannant, 30, and fellow front-rower Scott Bolton have given the Cowboys a shot in the arm ahead of Saturday night’s NRL preliminary final in Melbourne by inking new deals.
Hannant was thrown a lifeline this year by North Queensland after contemplating retirement when salary cap restraints squeezed him out of the Broncos.
He repaid their faith, playing all 26 games for the Cowboys this year mainly as a bench prop to earn a 12-month extension.
The 219-game veteran will add depth to a pack boasting Test props James Tamou and Matt Scott along with Bolton, 28, who has received a new two-year deal.
Bolton – who has been with North Queensland since 2007 – will notch game No.150 for the Cowboys against the Storm this weekend.
Young half Kyle Laybutt has also re-signed for two years while ex-Cowboys National Youth Competition Player of the Year, hooker Josh Chudleigh, has agreed to a new one-season deal.
“These are very good signings for us, as we’ve managed to retain invaluable experience in the forwards,” Cowboys football manager Peter Parr said.
“With Josh and Kyle, we’ve managed to keep two of our most promising young players, with both playing in key positions.”