After months of rumours, the St George Illawarra Dragons have made a major call over the future of outside back Zac Lomax.

The Dragons have confirmed that Lomax has been given permission to negotiate with rival clubs, and they will allow him to leave at the end of the 2024 NRL season.

In being terminated that club have stated that the club will make no financial contribution to the team he ends up signing with for next season.

"By finalising this decision now, it provides both Zac and the club with clarity regarding the future, allowing us time to strategise for the upcoming seasons," said Dragons CEO Ryan Webb in a statement.

“This arrangement enables the Dragons to focus on refining our Top 30 roster and utilising additional cap space, while Zac can pursue his future endeavours with another club."

This means that the club's highest-paid player can speak to rival teams, such as the Parramatta Eels, despite being contracted for another two seasons.

The Eels are seen as the front-runner to secure Lomax's services, but it is likely that he will receive attention and potential offers from a number of clubs due to his status as a star of the game and being in the prime of his career.

It is understood that the Dragons will be looking to secure elite-calibre talent to replace Lomax for the 2025 season.

The club have recently been linked to Penrith Panthers winger Sunia Turuva, with The Sydney Morning Herald reporting that the Fijian international was offered a contract worth nearly $450,000 per season.

NRL Rd 16 - Dragons v Raiders
WOLLONGONG, AUSTRALIA - JULY 03: Zac Lomax of the Dragons celebrates winning the round 16 NRL match between the St George Illawarra Dragons and the Canberra Raiders at WIN Stadium, on July 03, 2022, in Wollongong, Australia. (Photo by Mark Nolan/Getty Images)

One of the club's best players to begin the season, multiple publications reported earlier this season that Lomax was unhappy with his position after Shane Flanagan moved him from the centres to the wing.

"Zac has consistently demonstrated his talent and dedication to the club, especially in the face of external noise," coach Shane Flanagan said.

"We have full confidence that he will maintain his high level of performance for the remainder of the season, benefiting all those associated with the Dragons."

Along with Lomax announcing his departure from the club at the end of the season, the club have 12 other players off-contract at the end of the season.

Jack de BelinTom EisenhuthMathew FeagaiMax FeagaiJesse MarschkeFrancis MoloMichael MoloBen Murdoch-MasilaTyrell SloanJaydn Su'ASavelio Tamale, and Alec Tuitavake will be without a contract at the end of the 2024 season.

Centre Savelio Tamale and brothers Mathew and Max Feagai and Francis and Michael Molo have all been previously linked with either rival clubs or an exit from the club after the expiration of their contracts.

While the quintet may not feature in the Dragons Top 30 roster in 2025, Jaydn Su'A and Tyrell Sloan are the likeliest to be handed contract extensions due to recent rumours and their current form.