The man who helped start Travis Waddell’s NRL career at Canberra has ruled out throwing the “trapped” Raiders hooker a lifeline next year.
Neil Henry – then the North Queensland assistant – left Townsville to take up the Raiders coaching reins in 2007, with Proserpine’s Waddell in tow.
Henry – now the Cowboys head coach – felt for Waddell after the 2010 Indigenous All Star was banned from playing in the NRL for the rest of 2011 due to a change in dual registration rules.
But the North Queensland mentor ruled out making a play for the 22-year-old rake next season despite admitting he had spoken to Waddell’s management.
Under new NSWRL dual registration rules, Waddell is not able to play for the Raiders again this season.
Fringe Raiders must play in the local Canberra league – but Waddell opted to continue turning out for Souths Logan in the Queensland Cup.
His future was further clouded at the Raiders after they re-signed hooker Glen Buttriss and upgraded young rake Matt McIlwrick’s contract.
“It’s an unfortunate situation,” Henry said of Waddell’s plight.
“He had to make a decision and he is sort of trapped at the moment.”