In a huge development yesterday, the Penrith Panthers announced the immediate signing of former NSW centre Jamal Idris, with Brad Tighe heading to the Gold Coast in return.
Just two years ago, Idris was THE marquee signing for the Titans, as they offered him huge money and a long term contract to fight off offers from rival clubs, and if reports were to be believed, there were many.
Now, just two years later, Idris is off to join the fast rising Penrith Panthers on a 3 year deal. Idris had a rough time at the Gold Coast, although before suffering a season ending injury, Idris was starting to find top form.
Idris had been used heavily in the club’s 2014 membership promotions and was expected to be the key attacking weapon in the Titan’s backline. The announcement shocked Titans fans across social media yesterday and has most asking if there is something more serious behind the move.
We’ll let that pan out as it’s all speculation right now, but looking at the swap, it looks like the Titans didn’t fight overly hard to keep Idris. Don’t get me wrong, Brad Tighe is a quality player with a big future, but Idris was a marquee signing and pushing for NSW selection on the back of some solid form last season (For mine he was way off, but there was talk)
The reason for his move to Penrith has officially been quoted as being on compassionate grounds, in that he wants to move closer to family. If I remember correctly, the reason he moved from the Bulldogs to the Titans was also on compassionate grounds.
Idris obviously wanted out of the Gold Coast club and the Panthers were more than happy to accept him. For the Panthers it’s a big risk, as he won’t come cheap, however it’s one they are in a position to take.
There has been little question that the Panthers have come out in front of this ‘trade’ as Idris brings with him commercial opportunities as well as being a quality centre on his day.
It’ll be very interesting to hear more about the reasons for the move, and I honestly hope it’s purely a case of wanting to be closer to home, but for now, it’s hard to know what to make of the move.
Did the Titans fight to keep a player they signed on a big money 5 year contract? How long had Idris been unhappy? Did the Titans want to move Idris on? What was behind the move?
Let us know your thoughts, but for mine, I hope Idris finally lives up to his potential at the foot of the mountains. If he does, the 5 year plan may have shortened.
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