Written by Oliver Kellner-Dunk
Tariq Sims was recently permitted by his club the St George Illawarra Dragons to speak to other teams, as they would not be extending his current contract beyond 2022.
Speculation of Sims engaging in talks with the Roosters and Tigers then began, and it seemed the man who returned to the State of Origin arena with New South Wales this year had all but left the Red V.
However, Channel Nine’s The Mole is reporting that the Dragons have backflipped on their decision to allow Sims to talk to other clubs before his contract is up.
“Tariq Sims future remains a mystery but the Dragons haven’t given up hope that the veteran forward will still play for them next season,” said the Mole.
“Sims has spoken to several clubs but a deal has yet to be done.
— NRL on Nine (@NRLonNine) October 15, 2021
“Saints officials are hoping it stays that way – and the highly-respected forward stays in the Red V for one more season to help the club find its way into the finals.”
Following St George Illawarra’s decision to not re-sign Sims we have not heard publicly from the man himself, other than an offseason interview with the Dragons official website, where Sims seemed optimistic about the season ahead with the club.
“The skeleton of our squad is really starting to take shape. A couple of those boys, it was their first pre-season and they weren’t supposed to be getting a look in this year,” said Sims.
“We will be working tirelessly. We have a little break with our families, have some downtime, and then turn back up in November ready for next year.”
In this odd turn of events, it seems the Dragons may end up with egg on their face.
After all, it was the Dragons who told Sims he was free to talk to rival clubs immediately, but their sudden change of heart to keep the 31-year-old until the end of 2022 but still not offer him an extension may rub him the wrong way.
Sims is currently still free to hold talks with other clubs for next season, something he may continue to do unless the Dragons offer him an extension.