The Newcastle Knights have emerged as a major threat to the Titans’ hopes of snaring Nate Myles after tabling a $1.4 million deal for the Queensland Origin forward.
D-day is approaching in the Myles contractual saga, with the Roosters backrower or prop yesterday rejecting overtures from the Parramatta Eels.
Myles, who is contracted to the Roosters next season on a $400,000 deal but has been given permission to negotiate to ease the Bondi club’s salary cap pressures, will decide on Wednesday whether to join the Knights or the Titans.
Gold Coast were initially favoured to secure Myles. But with the Titans attempting to find room for the Maroons hardman in their salary cap for next season, Myles is understood to be leaning towards the Knights, who have tabled a four-year deal worth an estimated $350,000 a season.
Myles has the option to remain at the Roosters next season, but the bumper offer from Newcastle and the arrival of master coach Wayne Bennett next year has put the Knights firmly in the box seat.
The Titans, however, are not giving up hope. Their initial offer was a three-year term starting in 2013, but Gold Coast boss Michael Searle is attempting to find scope within the cap to accommodate Myles from next season.
Gold Coast’s present offer is believed to be about $400,000 shy of Newcastle’s formal proposal, a fiscal gap the Titans may struggle to bridge after recently signing Bulldogs sensation Jamal Idris and Cronulla prop Luke Douglas to lucrative deals.
The Titans also retained prop Luke Bailey on Wednesday, although the club will farewell Anthony Laffranchi (St Helens), Nathan Friend (Warriors) and Brad Meyers (retirement) at season’s end.
Myles’s manager Gavin Orr said last night the 25-year-old would make a decision after the Roosters’ clash with Cronulla on Sunday.