Dragons star Ben Hunt has more or less ruled out the Gold Coast Titans as a future destination but continues to stress his desire to return to Queensland.
Hunt is signed with the Dragons for 2024 and 2025 but has made no secret about wanting to move back to his home state to play out the rest of his career.
However, Hunt doesn’t think the Titans are a realistic option due to salary cap constraints.
Watch every game of The 2023 NRL Telstra Finals Series before the Grand Final Live & Ad-Break Free During Play on Kayo Sports. Join now and start streaming instantly >
“I’ve kind of not thought about it, but any team (in Queensland) is definitely an option,” Hunt said on Triple M.
“Whether the Titans can fit you in is another thing.
“The Titans have thrown a bit of money around lately, so I don’t know whether that can even happen.”
Hunt went on to say that playing for the Dragons is “not my first choice”, and even admitted retirement was an option, but for now, he is resigned to the fact he’ll be at the Red V for next season.
“It (retirement) definitely pops into your head,” Hunt said.
“It’s an option considering I’m at the back end of my career, it’s not far away, but once you retire you are done and I’m not ready to retire yet.
“I have some good footy left in me, so that’s not an option.”
Vaughan set to miss 4-6 for this?? | 00:27
Incoming Dragons coach Shane Flanagan is keen for Hunt to stay on as captain. The 33-year-old did admit the 2016 premiership winning coach will improve the culture of the club.
“I definitely think he will change a lot of things for sure,” Hunt said.
“I hope there is some success, there has to be a lot of change before there is.
“There’s definitely going to be some pain for sure, there’ll be some hard lessons and Flanno is ready to dish out some hard lessons to the guys. I’m hopeful there are some good times to come.
“I’ve had some good honest conversations with Flanno. His stance was that he isn’t coming in as a coach just to win games, he said I want you here, you are the captain and I want you to lead it and I don’t want to let you go.
“I’ve had some good honest conversations with Flanno. His stance was that he isn’t coming in as a coach just to win games, he said I want you here, you are the captain and I want you to lead it and I don’t want to let you go so as a coach, I totally understand that. Why would you want to let players go who you think can help your side?
Luai pushes to return for Storm clash | 01:10
Get all the latest NRL news, highlights and analysis delivered straight to your inbox with Fox Sports Sportmail. Sign up now!!
“At this stage, I’m a Dragon and going into pre-season that’s all I will think about.
“If the club thinks that someone else can do a better job than me (captaincy), I understand and accept that but as long as the club wants me there I’ll be happy to do it.”
Hunt is up in Queensland with the Prime Minister’s XIII squad, who will leave to Papua New Guinea on Saturday to play the Kumuls.
The Brisbane Broncos, who made a play at Hunt during the season after he expressed his desire to leave the Dragons, have recently come under the ire of NRL integrity unit, who recieved a formal complaint around the club’s pursuit of the star halfback.
Hunt was asked by Ben Dobbin on Triple M whether the Broncos have a case to answer.
“They (the Broncos) never contacted me and as far as I know they never contacted my management company,” he said.
“I don’t think they have anything to worry about.”
The Post Ben Hunt, where will he play, St George Illawarra Dragons, rugby league news, reaction, Gold Coast Titans Originally Posted on www.foxsports.com.au