Brisbane Broncos and Dolphins coaches Kevin Walters and Wayne Bennett have made it clear they want Herbie Farnworth in their 2023 squads.
The English-born centre, who is a permanent fixture in Walters' Broncos side and has been in excellent form over recent weeks, is off-contract at the end of the year.
He has made it clear that he won't be rushed into a decision as the expansion franchise target the Brisbane weapon.
It's unclear at this stage whether any other clubs are interested.
Bennett, who has been widely criticised for his recruitment run to date, told reporters on Wednesday that the club have made contact with Farnworth, and have refused to put a deadline on him to make a call.
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"We've spoken to him, after that just have to wait 'til they tell you what they're doing," Dolphins coach Wayne Bennett said on Wednesday.
"Deadlines are a waste of time, they never work. If you want the player bad enough you've just got to wait sometimes."
Speaking after Broncos' training though, having been told about the comments, Walters responded in kind to Bennett's approach for Farnworth, suggesting the Broncos believe he will remain at Red Hill in 2023 while touting he is "popular among other clubs."
“He played his 50th game for us last week, we expect to see him running out in Broncos colours next year that’s for sure,” Walters added.
“There’s a lot (for him) to consider. Herbie is pretty popular among other clubs but he’s no more popular there than what he is here. I feel he belongs here, cut his teeth here and I’d love to see him stay on.”
Farnworth, who is 22 years of age, has played 50 NRL games and scored 15 tries, but has taken his game to another level this year with six tries in nine games to go with 29 tackle busts and 137 metres per game.
The star centre is on the English radar for a spot at the end-of-year Rugby League World Cup.
The Dolphins have made some progress in backline signings over the last fortnight, adding Edrick Lee and Robert Jennings to join former signing Jamayne Isaako - as well as yet-to-debut young guns Valynce Te Whare and Isaiya Katoa.