At the point where you’re being rebuffed by the Knights, you’d think you’d start lowering your contract demands.
According to TotalRL, Tigers winger Kevin Naiqama is struggling to find a home for next season – either in Australia or abroad – due to unrealistic salary demands.
The report suggests that Naiqama has received some interest from Super League clubs Warrington and Salford, but that negotiations have so far been torpedoed due to an asking salary of over £150,000 (about $250,000 AUD).
His agent, Daryl Mather reportedly told The Daily Telegraph that he’s hoping for a concrete offer from Salford soon (while essentially admitting that the Knights said “thanks, but no thanks”).
“I spoke to Nathan (Brown) last week, because I was pitching Kevin to him,” Mather said. “He told me Salford phoned him about Kevin, because his kids went to the same school as the owner.”
“Salford have done a reference check, so I’m expecting something from them soon.”
While we appreciate Naiqama’s desire to maximize his earnings (who wouldn’t?), the fact that he’s so far failed to find a home at either the Knights or his existing club, the Tigers, should indicate that demand for his services is lukewarm at best. Demanding a quarter of a million dollars from Super League clubs as an unwanted fringe NRL player is frankly taking the piss, and we congratulate them for not throwing their money away on the first available NRL player who’ll accept it.
Naiqama is a capable NRL depth signing, but that’s likely his ceiling. So if he hopes to continue his playing career, he probably ought to temper his expectations.
Naiqama has played 86 first grade games for the Tigers, Panthers and Knights, and 7 Tests for Fiji.