Sport Dolphins hint at big names on 2023 hit list

07:26  14 october  2021
07:26  14 october  2021 Source:   wwos.nine.com.au

The NRL is set to announce its new expansion team. Here's what you need to know

  The NRL is set to announce its new expansion team. Here's what you need to know The NRL will announce that one of the Brisbane Firehawks, Brisbane Jets or Redcliffe Dolphins will be the 17th team in the competition. Here's what you need to know about the NRL expansion.The new addition will be the first team to enter the competition in 14 years. The Gold Coast Titans joined the NRL in 2007.

That brings us to the wish list and sitting at the very top, as the marquee target, is Cameron Munster. Munster would’ve been the top target for all the bid teams but having beaten the Firehawks and Jets as Brisbane’s second team, the Dolphins will be making a play to land the Melbourne five-eighth. Rudolf is signed to Cronulla until the end of 2024, Kerr is at St George Illawarra until the end of 2023 and Gamble is contracted to Brisbane until 2024. But don’t be surprised if the Dolphins were to make a play for someone like Gamble should he fail to see much game time with the Broncos next season.

The Redcliffe-based Dolphins from Brisbane’s northeastern bayside fringe beat two other expansion candidates to become the fourth club from Queensland state in the National Rugby League competition. The six-time champion Brisbane Broncos were the first Queensland club to enter the NRL in 1988, and have been followed by the North Queensland Cowboys and Gold Coast Titans. BRISBANE, Australia (AP) — The NRL is set for expansion in 2023 after the Australian Rugby League Commission approved a license for a 17th team.

The NRL has handed the Dolphins a licence to enter the competition in 2023, and now the southern Queensland club must begin preparations to compete in the world's top league.

That means assembling 30 top-class players to form a squad from which a 17-man team can be picked before Round 1... in about 17 months' time.

Wayne Bennett is expected to be announced as their inaugural coach, and Dolphins chairman Bob Jones all but revealed he will hand full responsibility of the roster and recruitment to the man with the clipboard.

Jones was asked specifically who he wanted to sign to pull on the Dolphins jersey.

"Probably anyone in the Test team," Jones said.

Dolphins officially handed the NRL's 17th licence

  Dolphins officially handed the NRL's 17th licence The NRL has officially handed a 17th licence to the Redcliffe-based Dolphins, who pipped the Jets and Firehawks for inclusion in an expanded competition. The Australian Rugby League Commission met on Wednesday morning to sign off on the decision, which will result in the Dolphins becoming the first team added to the league since the Gold Coast Titans were introduced in 2007. The announcement was made in time for the Dolphins to become a major player in the transfer market as a slew of free agents prepare to test their value from November 1.

Andrew Abdo insists the Dolphins can defy history and be an immediate success with Wayne Bennett set to head up the NRL's 17th team for their first season in 2023 . "Expansion needed to happen when we believe we can have a team that can compete from year one, from 2023 ." History shows new teams have found it difficult early, with the average wait for a premiership at 20 years. Melbourne are the big exception to that rule, reaching the finals in their first season and winning a premiership the next.

The Dolphins were officially unveiled as the NRL's 17th team on Wednesday, after staving off bid rivals the Jets and Firehawks to become the second team based in Brisbane. The club's headquarters will be based at their traditional home ground of Moreton Daily Stadium in Redcliffe, 40 km north-east of the Brisbane CBD. Speaking to News Corp leading into the official announcement, Dolphins general manager Terry Reader said the club would drop 'Redcliffe' from their name and consult the community about using a more general geographic reference instead if they were to win the license.

"And if we can get the rest of the Test team… that would be wonderful.

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NRL CEO Andrew Abdo says the introduction of the Redcliffe Dolphins is an opportunity to welcome new fans to the code and foster new talent. NRL CEO Andrew Abdo says the introduction of the Redcliffe Dolphins is an opportunity to welcome new fans to the code and foster new talent.

"I really don't know who's available, there's lots of wonderful players in the competition. We really haven't thought that far ahead."

While there hasn't been many rugby league Test matches in recent times, there is a large number of international class players who Jones would no doubt love to get his hands on.

The Dolphins can begin negotiating with players from November 1, but will only be allowed to approach off-contract players - ones whose current deals expire at the end of October next year.

NRL's new team to be known as Dolphins

  NRL's new team to be known as Dolphins The NRL's newest franchise will be called the "Dolphins", with the league opting for no reference to Brisbane or Redcliffe in their name.Fresh off their elevation to becoming the NRL's 17th franchise after 33 years of planning, questions lingered over the club's name.

The Redcliffe Dolphins have been officially unveiled as the 17th NRL team and will join the competition in 2023 . The Dolphins follow the Brisbane Broncos, Gold Coast Titans and North Queensland Cowboys as the latest Queensland side after the Australian Rugby League Commission approved the license. Join The Roar. Become a member to join in Australia's biggest sporting debate, submit articles, receive updates straight to your inbox and keep up with your favourite teams and authors.

Dolphin is a common name of aquatic mammals within the infraorder Cetacea. The term dolphin usually refers to the extant families Delphinidae (the oceanic dolphins ), Platanistidae

It's believed there are 157 NRL players on the market at the end of this month. Here's the best of them.


The Melbourne prop has had an extraordinary two years with the Storm, installing himself as one of the best forwards in the game and earning a State of Origin jersey for Queensland in the process.

Earlier this month rugby league Immortal Andrew Johns told Wide World of Sports he would make Welch a priority signing if he was running the Dolphins, and would name him their inaugural captain.

Welch has become a leader at Melbourne and would provide the Dolphins with a current Maroons representative and a ready-made skipper.

Christian Welch of Melbourne. © Getty Christian Welch of Melbourne.


Crichton has established himself as arguably the best backrower in the NRL, jumping into the void left by the retired Boyd Cordner at the Roosters this year.

He signed a short-term contract extension with the Chooks and rumours persist he may leave rugby league at the end of next year to pursue an opportunity of representing the Wallabies at the 2023 Rugby World Cup.

Dolphins to meet likely coach Bennett

  Dolphins to meet likely coach Bennett The Dolphins are set to meet with Wayne Bennett on Friday as they close in on appointing the seven-time premiership winner as their inaugural NRL coach.Bennett will have lunch with Dolphins officials at the Redcliffe Leagues Club on Friday, two days after the NRL confirmed the club would be the competition's 17th franchise.

dolphin .

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But regardless of whether that's his plan or not, Crichton can be approached by NRL clubs from November 1 and is likely to have several suitors lining up, the Dolphins included.


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Crichton's teammate at Bondi, Manu is among the best few centres in the game at the moment and will command a high price on his next deal.

He's highly valuable to any team given his ability to play centre, fullback, and five-eighth with equal class, as shown for the Roosters this year.

Like Crichton, though, Manu has attracted interest from rugby union and has the chance to potentially play for the All Blacks in 2023.


The South Sydney playmaker was arguably the best five-eighth in the NRL this year, and while he hasn't played a Test yet he has represented the NSW Blues and Indigenous All Stars on multiple occasions.

Walker's halves partner, Adam Reynolds, has left the burrow and the former is yet to commit to the cardinal and myrtle beyond next season.

He also formed a close bond with Wayne Bennett at the Bunnies, and Bennett will be coaching the Dolphins in their inaugural season.

The Redcliffe Dolphins' fairytale journey to the NRL

  The Redcliffe Dolphins' fairytale journey to the NRL It's been a 74-year-long tale of wins, losses, resurgence from bad bank balances, and the tireless devotion of generations that has culminated in a fairytale new chapter for a team once called "Shellgrit".A team which made its home on the site of a redeveloped dump.

Cody Walker of the Rabbitohs. © Getty Cody Walker of the Rabbitohs.


The Melbourne wrecking ball was named the Hooker of the Year this season and is hot property on the NRL market, albeit that his value may have taken a hit due to his involvement in the recent white powder scandal.

He's already attracted plenty of interest from rival clubs but the Storm are hoping to hold onto the nuggety No.9, despite also having Harry Grant on their books, who some consider the best young rake in the game.

While Smith has played as Melbourne's hooker this year, he is equally effective as a small middle forward, and can play prop or lock.


Speaking of hookers, Reed Mahoney is on the market and the Parramatta rake is a Queenslander, which adds to the appeal of a move north.

He was unlucky not to make his Maroons debut this year but he's not far behind Harry Grant and Brandon Smith in terms of being the best young No.9 in the game.


The Penrith and Fiji backrower is built in the mould of Titans beast David Fifita, and has the ability to break a game open with one big play.

Kikau has already been the subject of speculation in recent months, with news the Dragons are keen to lure him away from the foot of the mountains.

The salary cap squeeze at Penrith is likely to cost the club a number of quality players, and Kikau may be looking for a new home before too long.

Ex-Bronco officials Dolphins new CEO

  Ex-Bronco officials Dolphins new CEO Former Brisbane Broncos executive Terry Reader will be the new CEO of the Dolphins, after he spearheaded the club's bid to join the NRL for 2023.Just a day out from the expected appointment of Wayne Bennett as coach, the Dolphins board confirmed a new club structure on Wednesday.

Queensland great Wally Lewis pays tribute to Norm Provan, who has died at the age of 88. Queensland great Wally Lewis pays tribute to Norm Provan, who has died at the age of 88.


Another hooker on this list but one that brings a wealth of experience and leadership, unlike a couple of the younger guys.

Hodgson is an England Test player and was considered the second best rake in the game behind only Cameron Smith just a couple of short years ago.

His stocks fell slightly this year after internal drama at Canberra, when he relinquished the captaincy and was then the subject of rumours of a rift with coach Ricky Stuart.

The Broncos were interested in acquiring his services if he left the Raiders, but he could well end up just up the road at Redcliffe.


The Parramatta captain is loved by Eels fans and is part of the furniture at the blue and gold club.

But for the Dolphins he would be a quality fullback-utility, who brings leadership and potential captaincy credentials to the sunshine state in a ready-made package.

Rugby league Immortal Norm Provan has died at the age of 88. Rugby league Immortal Norm Provan has died at the age of 88.


Ponga's contract is reported to have player options for seasons 2023 and 2024 in it, meaning he could effectively leave the Knights at the end of next year if he wanted to.

Like others on this list, rugby union is chasing Ponga but the classy fullback has stated he doesn't want to leave the Hunter without winning a premiership for Newcastle.

He started his NRL career at the Cowboys and is a Maroons representative, so a Dolphins move would be a homecoming of sorts.

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'Worst thing' Dolphins can do ahead of NRL debut .
EXCLUSIVE: A rugby league great reveals the 'recipe for disaster' ahead of the Dolphins NRL entry in 2023.A member of the South Queensland Crushers in their inaugural season in 1995 as a player, he was later involved in the formation of the Gold Coast Titans when they entered the competition in 2007.

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