WAKEFIELD Trinity Wildcats are in discussions with two players about joining the club for Super League XVIII - but Keith Mason is not one of them.
Wildcats head coach Richard Agar has admitted he tried to sign Mason, a former Wakefield player who left Huddersfield Giants last month, “many months ago” but has since turned his attentions elsewhere, with talks ongoing with two players contracted to other clubs.
“We are talking to a couple of players,” said Agar.
“Keith Mason isn’t one of them at this moment in time. We did have dialogue with Huddersfield and with his agent many months ago and nothing materialised from their end so we set our sights elsewhere.
“I understand Keith’s position has changed at Huddersfield over recent weeks but I’m not sure if we’ve had some dialogue with his agent or not. We are speaking to two other guys who we think really fit our bill but there’s one or two little things in there at the moment that need to fall our way before we have a chance of getting them in.”
The ’Cats coach has made no secret of his desire to add at least one forward to his squad for 2013 but would not been drawn into naming his targets. He did, however, hint at a willingness to let one of his numerous options in the backs go if it means realsing the funds to bring an extra forward option in.
“We want to get another forward in here,”he said. “Whether that’s an out-and-out front-rower or someone who can play in a couple of spots in the park, whether it be front row middle or dropping back and playing a little bit of back row middle as well.
“In an ideal world we’re two players light but realistically, where we’re at, one player light but I would say we have got an extraordinary amount of depth in the backs at the moment. I think our backs are well covered. If we could trade a forward for a back at this moment it would probably balance the squad out a little bit better but that’s the art of trying to manage your cap.”
He added: “The two players we’re talking to are players under contract so that’s wrong [to name them] because if it doesn’t materialise these players are still at their existing clubs.
“We don’t really want to alert the general rugby league public to possibilities that these players are available because if the situation changes at another club it could end up creating a bidding war for ourselves all because we can’t hold our own water.”
Agar was speaking at a Supporters Trust fans’ forum at the Rapid Solicitors Stadium on Tuesday night.
He was joined by chairman Andrew Glover, chief executive James Elston and players Danny Kirmond, Richie Mathers and Reece Lyne.
Topics of discussion included the squad’s return to training, player recruitment, merchandise, the new Academy set-up and developments on the club’s potential new ground at Newmarket.
See Friday’s Wakefield Express Sport for more from the forum and all the latest Wildcats news.