NRL Rd 24 - Raiders v Sea Eagles
CANBERRA, AUSTRALIA - AUGUST 27: Christian Tuipulotu of the Sea Eagles is tackled during the round 24 NRL match between the Canberra Raiders and the Manly Sea Eagles at GIO Stadium on August 27, 2022 in Canberra, Australia. (Photo by Jason McCawley/Getty Images)

The Manly Sea Eagles have confirmed that they have released winger Christian Tuipulotu from the remaining two years of his contract to explore other opportunities.

The release by the Sea Eagles means he is able to join the St George Illawarra Dragons effective immediately, a statement confirmed by the Dragons on Thursday.

Tuipulotu has signed with the Dragons on a two-year contract and will be the last player on the club's Top 30 roster for this season. His arrival will likely see him slot straight into the backline after Corey Allan has been ruled out for the season with injury.

“Christian is a big body who can add some strike out of the backfield and will be a valuable addition to the club,” Flanagan said in a media statement.

“We have some good outside backs coming through at the Dragons but having lost Corey Allan for the season it was important for us to add some NRL experience to the backline for this year.”

Recruited from the Sydney Roosters at the end of the 2020 season, Tuipulotu appeared in 32 games for the Sea Eagles, including 12 last year.

The move will see Tupiulotu immediately enter the frame to play first-grade at the Red V, who themselves have plenty of questions about the way they will line up when they open their season away from home against the Gold Coast Titans.

While Mathew Feagai played on the wing for much of last year, brother Max and late 2023 debutant Sione Finau are both in the running for a wing spot, while recent comments suggesting Jack Bird could play in the centres means Zac Lomax may also be in line for the wing spot.

"We thank Christian for all of his efforts at the Sea Eagles and wish him the best in the next chapter of his career,'' Manly CEO Tony Mestrov said via Manly Media.