Less than a week remains until the NRL’s abominable Round 13 deadline finishes, which means Gold Coast may just have enough time to entice star five-eighth Aidan Sezer to perform yet another Olympic-style backflip.
But while Manly’s Daly Cherry-Evans might have squeezed a few more dollars out of the maroon-and-white over the past few months, the 23-year-old Sezer has ruled out any chance of following suit.
Upon arriving in Sydney with the rest of his teammates for Friday night’s clash with the Wests Tigers, the Canberra-bound playmaker made his intentions clear: He’s a man of his word.
“I made my decision, so it’s time to move on,” he said.
“The decision has been done and I’m not going to go into why I made it.
“It’s exciting (joining Raiders) but that’s next year. I’ve got a game (on Friday) night.”
Gold Coast will now head into what’s left of the free agent market armed with an open chequebook, and a marquee man will be at the top of the hitlist.
Newly re-signed halfback Kane Elgey now looms as the point man coach Neil Henry will build around.
Asked whether some players would be disappointed in not playing with a player of Cherry-Evans’ calibre next season, Henry said: “I think you’re wrong about that.
“That’s in the future. We can’t talk about hypotheticals, like who you might be playing with next year.
“The rules allowed this situation to occur and it has occurred. It’s all semantics now.
“We’ll move on and have a look at the salary cap to see who we can entice to come to the club.”
Henry also pointed to a couple of local juniors who could partner Elgey at the scrumbase next season in what would be one of the youngest halves pairing in the competition.
“Who knows, we’ve also got (five-eighths) Jamal Fogarty and Christian Hazard on our books so there might be a guy already there,” he said.
“Kane has certainly taken a leadership on that left edge and playing some fine footy himself. He’s really improving.”