Tigers cir­cle Mbye but Bull­dogs want to keep him

The Sunday Telegraph (Sydney) - - NRL - MICHAEL CARAYANNIS

WESTS Tigers have been cir­cling Can­ter­bury’s Moses Mbye despite the Bull­dogs in­sist­ing they do not need to shed play­ers to stay un­der the salary cap.

The Tigers have also joined the race to sign North Queens­land hooker Jake Granville, with the Eels also ex­press­ing an in­ter­est in the 29-year-old off-con­tract premier­ship win­ner.

The Bull­dogs’ pre­car­i­ous sal- ary cap sit­u­a­tion was laid bare last week but the club is adamant it will not have to shop any stars.

Can­ter­bury still need salary cap re­lief, how­ever, as a ros­ter im­bal­ance has sur­faced be­cause of back-ended deals.

Mbye is one of up to 10 Can­ter­bury play­ers whose wage sig­nif­i­cantly jumps next sea­son. His cur­rent deal ex­pires in 2020.

As the Bull­dogs con­tinue to deal with the in­her­ited salary cap dis­as­ter, the Tigers have loomed as a pos­si­ble des­ti­na­tion for the 24-year-old. The Bull­dogs would love to keep Mbye.

But he could be the most at­trac­tive propo­si­tion to op­po­si­tion teams given his age and the star­ring role he has played since mov­ing from the halves to full­back this year.

Corey Thomp­son has been an un­sung hero of the Tigers back­line since mak­ing a fist of the full­back role but the 28-yearold is largely seen as a winger.

The club had high hopes for Tuli Lolo­hea but he has been un­able to nail down a per­ma­nent full­back spot.

Cen­tre Kevin Naiqama will join English Su­per League club St He­lens, leav­ing Benji Mar­shall, Tim Grant, Sauaso Sue, Malakai Watene-Zelez­niak and Pita Godinet on their off-con­tract list.

Mbye will again don the No.1 jersey to­day when the Bull­dogs play Cronulla.

Moses Mbye.

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