FOUR FORWARDS NAMED ON BENCH FOR ROUND 1 CLASH
Dragons Coach Wayne Bennett has named a big 17 man-squad for the Round 1 clash against the Eels at Parramatta Stadium on Friday night, with four forwards named on the bench all capable of playing in the front-row.
Dragons forward Dan Hunt is excited about the challenge a big Parramatta pack poses for the Dragons,
“Parramatta’s got a big pack, but we’ve got a job to do. They had a great season last year and a great finals campaign, but this is a new season, we’ve trained hard and done everything right so far this week and we can’t wait to get back into football on Friday night”.
Unavailable Dragons are: Neville Costigan (shoulder) Rnd 4, Kyle Stanley (ankle) Rnd 6, Peni Tagive (ACL) indefinite
The St George Illawarra Dragons yesterday announced that Dally M five-eight of the year Jamie Soward has re-signed with the Club for a further three years, until the end of the 2013 season.
To watch Jamie discuss re-signing and thanking Red V Members for their support click here
The announcement is a boost for the Club and Red V Members alike in the build-up to the opening game of the 2010 season this Friday night against the Parramatta Eels.
“I wanted to stay at the Dragons and I am very happy that I will be here for at least the next three seasons,” said Soward. “I am also very happy to have this all finalised heading into the season and to know where I am at for the next few years.
“The Dragons are a fantastic Club who took a chance on me a few seasons ago and I think it is a great show of faith from the Club to offer me this contract,” added Soward. “It is the longest contract that I have ever signed and I am looking forward to continuing to work hard and repay the Club, Red V Members, Partners and fans for their support”.
The re-signing of the 2009 Provans Summons People’s Choice Award winner is sure to provide the Club, its corporate Partners and Red V Members with a massive boost heading into Friday nights round 1 clash with the Eels and it is a decision that has also delighted Coach Wayne Bennett.
“It is great that Jamie has signed to stay at the Club and we are all elated that it is done before the season has started so he can concentrate on playing football,” said Bennett.
Dragons CEO Peter Doust echoed the sentiments and is equally as pleased to have secured Soward to a long-term deal.
“Jamie is a key player, personality and contributor at our Club both on and off the field and I am delighted that we have been able to reach an agreement to keep him at the Dragons for at least the next few years,” said Dragons CEO Peter Doust.
Soward had a remarkable year in 2009, surpassing a number of long-standing Dragons records, winning numerous awards as voted by the fans and gaining his very first representative honours.
In 2009 Soward broke the St George Illawarra Dragons record for points in a season, overtaking Mark Riddell’s previous record of 166 with a mammoth 234 points. Soward also surpassed St George Dragons legend Harry Bath’s record of 225 points in a single season. Soward also broke Wayne Bartrim’s record of 71 goals in a season, kicking 90 last season.
Soward was rewarded for his stellar season by being named Five-Eight of the Year at the 2009 Dally M Awards. The popular five-eight was also rewarded by the fans, winning the Dragons Red V Members Player of the Year Award for the second consecutive year as well as the Provans Summons People’s Choice Award for most popular player with the fans at the 2009 Dally M Awards.
In another first for Soward, he was named in the NSW Country team for the annual City v Country clash, gaining his first representative honour since entering the NRL. Soward was also named in the initial Kangaroos train-on squad at the end of last season.
More recently Soward played a key role in the Indigenous side in the inaugural Indigenous All-Stars v NRL All-Stars match on the Gold Coast, where he scored the match winning try to give the Indigenous All-Stars side a 16-12 victory.