Cowboys pounce on Tigers discard
NORTH Queensland have secured the signature of Kiwi international Esan Marsters on a three-year deal.
The talented centre last week sought a release from the final year of his contract with the Wests Tigers to join the Cowboys in time for the upcoming pre-season next month.
The 23-year-old has been one of the Tigers' best this past season, scoring nine tries and kicking 40 goals, and will be a huge boost to the Cowboys' backline stocks.
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It comes after North Queensland backs Jordan Kahu, Javid Bowen, Gideon Gela-Mosby and Enari Tuala departed the club at the end of the 2019 season as part of a massive clean-out.
Cowboys director of football Peter Parr admitted the club had been focused on bolstering their outside backs for the future.
"Esan is a high-quality centre, he's an international and we believe he is one of the more dangerous outside backs in the NRL," Parr said.
"The outside backs is an area we have been looking to increase our depth and we believe Esan is going to be a quality signing for our squad for 2020 and beyond.
"He's only 23, so his best football is still in front of him, which is exciting considering what he has already achieved in his career."
The Tigers are in the midst of a roster shake-up of their own.
Forward Ryan Matterson, who was on the verge of NSW Origin selection in 2019, appears to have played his last game for the club and is on the verge of being released.
The Tigers are becoming increasingly frustrated with the behaviour of Matterson and, despite his standing as the club's premier forward, he is on the outer.