The Newcastle Knights have upped the ante in their bid to re-sign rookie five-eighth Ryan Stig, offering him a two-year deal on increased terms.
Little known before his NRL debut last month, Stig has emerged as a priority retention target for the Knights on the strength of his five impressive NRL games.
The 21-year-old’s man-of-the-match effort on debut against the Penrith Panthers impressed incoming coach Wayne Bennett and the Knights tabled a one-year deal.
But Stig’s management rejected that offer and, with at least two rival clubs circling, Newcastle have extended their offer by a year.
Stig said last night that he was still waiting to liaise with his agent, David Riolo, but said ‘‘it’s a good position to be in’’, knowing that there was demand for his services.
‘‘I wasn’t in that position five weeks ago, that’s for sure,’’ Stig said.
‘‘I’ll just talk to Dave and we’ll go from there.
‘‘I love Newcastle, and I don’t want to go anywhere, but at the same time you have to do what’s best for yourself and your family.’’