Titans youngsters palm cash, stay loyal - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Titans youngsters palm cash, stay loyal

30/01/2009 07:37:19 PM Comments (0)

A lucrative six-figure deal from the Sydney Roosters has been knocked back by a 20-year-old on the Gold Coast yet to make his NRL debut.

Instead David Mead - formerly Moore - has opted for a contract extension at the Titans along with fellow exciting youngsters Esikeli Tonga and Kevin Gordon.

Mead found himself in the strange position of playing international football before earning an NRL nod when he was called up by PNG for the 2008 World Cup.

The youngster shone on the wing for the Kumuls, prompting PNG mentor - and Roosters under-20s coach - Adrian Lam to try and lure Mead to Bondi Junction.

But in a shot in the arm for the Titans, Mead decided to stay along with fellow in-demand 20-year-olds Tonga and Gordon after talking with family.

"My family are here and having them close is very important to me," Mead said.

"I've also set myself some goals that I want to achieve with the Titans.

"I'm really happy here and didn't really want to move so the money was never really ever a deciding factor."

The Titans said all three had decided to stay for "significantly less" money until the end of 2011.

The trio impressed in the Titans' Toyota Cup in 2008.

Gordon was the standout, crossing for 21 tries in as many games - more than half the under-20 team's total tries scored.

"Last year under Murph (U20s coach Steven Murphy) I improved so much and I just didn't see any reason in moving away from a club that I love and away from my family at this stage in my career," said Gordon.

Titans managing director Michael Searle said the trio's decision gave a big thumb's up to coach John Cartwright.

"The reason we have been able to retain these three outstanding young players is because they know that with the right effort and commitment to their individual games, the opportunities will present themselves under John's guidance at the Titans," he said.

Cartwright added: "When you consider we have already retained the likes of Will Matthews, Shannon Walker and more recently Kayne Lawton, you can really start to see that we are building something pretty special."

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