The Newcastle Knights have announced the signing of Warriors halfback Mason Lino for the 2019 season and beyond.
Lino has agreed to join the Knights on a two-year deal which will see the playmaker remain in the Hunter until at least the end of the 2020 season.
The 24-year-old made eight appearances for the Warriors in 2018, which saw him score three tries, have two try assists and make an average of 107.8 kicking metres.
Despite being contracted to the New Zealand based team for the 2019 season, the Warriors have agreed to let Lino go on a early release in order for him to pursue the opportunity at Newcastle.
Knights Player List Manager Troy Pezet says the signing of Lino will create healthy competition within the club for positions.
"Mason is a talented young man," Pezet told newcastleknights.com.au.
"He provides us with good depth for Mitchell, Kalyn and Connor."
The Samoan international made his NRL debut in 2015 for the Warriors where he played only three games for the club, and after three seasons in the NRL, sits on 17 first grade appearances.
Pezet says Lino's goal kicking will be an asset for the club.
"Mason has a lot of strings to his bow," Pezet continued.
"Not only does he have a handy kicking game but he's a sharp goal-kicker too."