Parramatta's Isaiah Papali'i rejects huge Dolphins offer
Barnstorming Eels back-rower Isaiah Papali'i looks set to knock back a massive approach from the new Dolphins franchise for 2023, leaving his future a two-horse race. Papali'i's manager Daniel O'Loughlin has told Wide World of Sports that the much-improved forward doesn't want to leave Sydney. That reduces his options to staying at Parramatta or accepting a big offer from Wests Tigers. "The Tigers are very keen but he also feels a loyalty to Parramatta so will probably give them the last say.
I think they are meeting this week so we will see what they come up with." Papali'i was one of the big improvers of 2021, helping the Eels into the top four with his aggressive forward play in attack and defence. His ability to play both middle and edge forward adds to his value and the tough forward has been in hot demand. Papali'i finished 2021 third in the NRL for post-contact metres and should only get better in coming years. The Eels are desperate to keep him but also have several big names off contract including skipper Clint Gutherson, hooker Reed Mahoney and prop Junior Paulo.