Parramatta Eels have got their man.
Anthony Watmough has officially signed with the club after months of speculation of his exit from Brookvale Oval. His request for release from Manly was granted to allow the thirty-one year old to link up with the western Sydney club on a four year deal. He is the second major forward to leave the Sea Eagles after Glenn Stewart was picked up by South Sydney on a two year contract.
It was a big day for the Eels as they announced four further signings. Reece Robinson moves from Canberra on a one year contract. It’s likely Robinson could play fullback after Jarryd Hayne’s decision to pursue a National Football League career at the start of the month.
Brad Takairangi joins from the Gold Coast Titans after turning out thirty-nine times in his two seasons at the Queensland club. Takairangi’s exit from the Titans continues the cleanout which started with the retirements of Luke Bailey and Ashley Harrison and continues with the recent exit of halves Albert Kelly and Maurice Blair to Hull Kingston Rovers in Super League.
Richie Fa’aoso returns to rugby league after initially retiring at the end of the 2013 season with a serious neck injury. The Eels will work closely with the National Rugby League to make sure that Fa’aoso is not risking greater injury. The governing body will also make a decision on Danny Wicks’ return to the game with the blue and golds. Wicks spent time in jail after being sentenced for drug trafficking.
Parramatta previously announced the signings of Beau Champion (South Sydney), Ben Crooks (Hull FC) and Shannan McPherson (Salford) for the 2015 season. Their impressive recruitment drive may drive the Eels into a strong position for a top four finals spot.