Dragons players resigned to Boyd leaving - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Dragons players resigned to Boyd leaving

David Beniuk 06/04/2011 07:58:18 PM Comments (0)

The belief that fullback Darius Boyd is almost certain to leave St George Illawarra with coach Wayne Bennett has spread to the NRL club's players.

Boyd joined the Dragons with Bennett in 2009 and it has been an open secret the Test and Queensland back is keen to stick with his mentor.

"Darius has always been a bit of a mercenary for hire and he's given great service to our club and if he does move on will be sorely missed," winger Jason Nightingale told reporters on Wednesday.

"We were always foreseeing Darius making the move with Wayne."

Bennett - with Boyd - is favoured to return to Brisbane next year after announcing he would finish at the Dragons when his three-year deal expires at the end of 2011.

Newcastle owner Nathan Tinkler is also after the seven-time premiership winning mentor, while South Sydney were previously linked to him.

Nightingale said the Dragons players understood Boyd's motivation.

"He's won two premierships at two different clubs under Wayne and he's only ever known Wayne," the Kiwi international said.

"So it's completely understandable for someone who's had such success under one coach and has the opportunity to chase that success further.

"Being from Queensland, it's not like he's at home in Wollongong anyway and it's about what his personal ideas are about.

"Obviously Wayne's not too bad a bloke to follow around."

Nightingale, Brett Morris and youngster Kyle Stanley would be among the possible replacements for Boyd in the red and white No.1 jersey next year.

"If they asked me to do it I'd be more than happy to," Nightingale said.

"It's not really my decision. I'll probably train a bit there next year but it will be up to the coaching staff.

"It's a pretty demanding position and if I was going to be thrust into that role I'd want to spend a full off-season learning the trade."

Nightingale recently signed a five-year extension with the club and said Bennett had given him an indication, before the announcement he was leaving, that changes were possible.

But the 24-year-old said that had not been a factor in his decision to recommit to the premiers.

"It's more about the club I was signing with than the coach," he said.

"I've been at the club for six years, four years before Wayne was there.

" ... I always had the confidence in the club and it's somewhere that I've called home for a long time."

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