With seemingly half their squad off contract at season’s end, it should probably come as little surprise that every second story seems to be about the Raiders’ roster.
Today’s news came via Nathan Ryan on Fox Sports, who reports that the Raiders are in “advanced talks” with the management of forward Luke Bateman about a two-year extension, and that they’re also “in dialogue” with forward Iosia Soliola.
In light of recent reports that forwards Junior Paulo and Shannon Boyd might be out the door, it’s obviously critical that Canberra retain some depth, and both Bateman and Soliola give them that, while leaving plenty of salary cap space for the Raiders to make a splash in free agency (like Maroons forward Tim Glasby, for example), should they choose to.
Bateman has played 57 first grade games for the Raiders since his debut in 2015.
Soliola has played 158 first grade games for the Raiders and Roosters, 11 Tests for New Zealand, and 4 for Samoa.