Henare Wells heads to Burleigh Bears — money free for Mini, LO’D?

Correction: the previous version of this article mentioned that Isaac Liu might be headed elsewhere. But Ben Honig of Twitter fame (@benos95) alerted me to a tweet from the Roosters mentioning he was contracted next year with the Chooks. My bad, and thanks Ben for clearing that up for me. 

Source: Roosters.

Source: Roosters.

UPDATED: There was a lot of talk of Henare Wells eventually developing into that backup backs spot that Coach Trent Robinson highlighted as an issue at the Fans Forum last year.

However, it will be hard to do so from the Burleigh shore.

Twitter’s Matthew Perry (@Chandler_BANG) and Adam Hogan (@Addzy18) alerted 26 Rounds of the news that Henare Wells of the Newtown Jets has left to club to take up an offer with the Burleigh Bears.

26 Rounds is not privy to the details of the deal, but it seemed likely given the signings of Jonathon Reuben and Sio Siua Taukeiaho, who will both play for Newtown assuming they aren’t quite ready for the top grade.

The signing also means the Roosters have a little bit more wiggle room to accommodate the potential signings of Anthony Minichiello — who according to an article on NRL.com is working with the the Roosters and waiting on the NRL’s review of the salary cap which will include dispensation for long-service players —  and Luke O’Donnell, who is reportedly seeking a two year deal from the club but is also attracting interest from the Cronulla Sharks. 

While Wells would not have been on top coin, assuming the Roosters also lose Nafe Seluini, and with Marty Kennedy also leaving there could be enough under the regular cap to fit O’Donnell in despite the signing of Remy Casty, as the salary cap has increased from $5.85 million this year to $6.3 million next year.

Watch this space.


10 responses to “Henare Wells heads to Burleigh Bears — money free for Mini, LO’D?

  1. Be a shame to lose Isaac Liu as I thought he did everything asked of him every time he played, but I guess tough decisions have to be made and his physical frame will probably mean he’ll never be top drawer. Still, would be a young, and quality, pick-up for his next club.


  2. No problem at all. I had read that elsewhere too. I also still believe Mini should stay fullback. I know his thrust and penetration (ahem) aren’t what they were last season, but I counter that by saying his positioning for grubbers and the like has never been better. And saving 6-pointers are worth exactly as much as scoring them. Plus, it’s not like RTS is being starved of opportunities. As a winger, he gets plenty of touches to show his stuff. And if memory serves, his admittedly few opportunities at fullback last year suggested he needed at least another year to learn the trade. Just some thoughts.


    • I’m firmly in the RTS to fullback category…I love Mini and if he stays there its fine. But RTS will dominate from there, given more game time and half a season to adapt to the rigours of first-grade fullbackery…

      I think Mini on the wing makes sense at this stage of his career personally, but that’s not to say I’m right. Mini proved a lot of people wrong last year, myself included.


  3. The loss of Kennedy and rumours of Evans and Liu potentially in new colours next season, one wonders of the talents and qualities a Remi Casty brings to the Mighty Roosters in 2014. His overall fitness and work rate in the W.C seems like he’ll make the transition to the NRL relatively easilly, but there must be something more he offers over and above the youth of the two players mentioned above, and the seasoned O’Donnel.

    Yo! Welcome back J.J… keep’im coming ol’ boy!


    • I hear from people who know people that he is going to be that athletic front rower in the Burgess mould…and thank you my friend! I must say, I haven’t truly returned until DMW comments on a story. Now I can relax 🙂


    • Cheers 🙂 and from all accounts he’s here and in the plans for 2014…but if LOD and Casty BOTH play, how do you fit Liu, Evans AND Napa into the game plan with the forwards they already have?

      Someone will miss out, meaning someone will eventually get signed by another club. That’s business, and I couldn’t blame any of them for seeking a first grade guarantee elsewhere if it came down to it.


  4. I just hope the Roosters do not become a transit lounge of young talent. It’s crucial for these players to continue to develop and hone their skills and be ready to take the opportunity to step up when it presents itself. I’m a little uncomfortable with players of such a tender age (21-22y/o)already looking further afield for an opportunity when they should be striving to unseat the club’s more established names. Kennedy being that bit older was an exception in my opinion, but Napa seems to have a regular starting spot in his sights and I think this mentality is paying dividends for him.

    But, are we all forgetting about reserve grade here?


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