Waratahs centre Ryan Cross is in discussions to become the latest rugby union convert to return to the NRL after meeting Wests Tigers coach Tim Sheens for coffee last Thursday.
The Sunday Telegraph was tipped off about the pair being spotted on the cafe strip at Darling Street in Rozelle, and Cross and the Tigers have confirmed they are in the early stages of negotiations.
A return to rugby league with Wests Tigers would continue the Concord club’s strong father-son ties, with Cross’s dad Paul a cult figure at Balmain during the late 1960s and early ’70s.
An 18-Test Wallaby since switching to rugby union in 2007, Cross has spent the past 12 months playing outside centre for the NSW Waratahs after four seasons with the Western Force.
When contacted yesterday, the rugby union international confirmed he was thinking about a return to the NRL.
“I do still want to continue playing football – the body feels good,” Cross said.
“Definitely rugby league has always been close to my heart and I’ve grown up with it. It was never really something that I considered I would go back to, but now that I’ve been back in Sydney for 12 months it’s a big possibility.
“Obviously, my dad played at the Tigers – and I was a supporter as a kid – so hopefully something can be worked out.”
Cross is also being pursued by rugby union clubs in the UK and France.