The St George Illawarra Dragons have completed a swap deal that will bring Viliami Fifita and Alec Tuitavake to the club in exchange for Aaron Woods, but star centre Moses Suli has made a staggering admission.
Speaking to the media on Tuesday afternoon, Suli revealed that Fifita didn't actually want to leave the Sea Eagles to begin with.
He also said he didn't want to make the move either before he ultimately did at the start of the 2022 season.
Suli has flourished at the Red V since leaving the Northern Beaches, following a 2021 season where he fell behind both Brad Parker and Morgan Harper in the pecking order to play only a handful of games.
The now 24-year-old enjoyed a breakout season in 2019 where he played 22 games, but he then played a combined 26 games over the next two seasons before his ultimate move to the Dragons, which saw him hit career-best form despite the club's struggles last year.
Suli is managed by the same manager (Mario Tartak) as Fifita, and revealed he revealed the youngster never wanted to make the move to the Dragons.
“We've got the same manager and (Tartak) let me know that (Fifita) was looking to come here and from what my manager said, (Fifita) didn't want to come, he loved it over there at Manly,” Suli said.
“But yeah, I was in the same situation as well, I didn't want to come here but I've got to do what's best for me and best for my footy and he's coming to do the same thing.
“Hopefully he comes and has a crack and hopefully does well.”
The move, which was confirmed yesterday, will see Woods head to the Sea Eagles as part of the club's Top 30, while both Fifita and Tuitavake have switched to the Dragons on two-year deals.
Fifita, who impressed during the pre-season trials, will join the club's Top 30 immediately, while Tuitavake will be a development player for the remainder of this year, before becoming Top 30 next year.
The confirmed move comes after Manly CEO Tony Mestrov had originally denied the reports the pair would be released.