The Wallabies’ horror 40-6 defeat to Wales has cast significant doubt on Roosters gun Joseph Suaalii’s future in the 15-man code.
That is according to The Daily Telegraph’s Phil Rothfield, who explained he wouldn’t be “surprised” if his manager Isaac Moses was looking for a get-out clause.
Following the defeat, Eddie Jones’ side’s campaign is all but over, failing to make it out of the group stage for the first time in Australia’s World Cup history.
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Suaalii signed a mammoth three-year deal worth around $5 million in March, with the contract beginning after his Roosters deal expires in 2024.
“I’ve reach out to Isaac Moses who manages Joseph Suaalii, he’s not taking calls or text messages,” Rothfield said on the Big Sports Breakfast.
“But I’m hearing that you know, Suaalii, will his deal be in doubt now? Does he really want to leave a powerhouse club like the Roosters?
“A future in the NRL or go over and get belted? I know the British and Irish Lions are coming over here in a few years and the home World Cup.
“But I would not at all be surprised if they start investigating how to get out of that contract.
“This is a massive, massive story.”
If Rugby Australia weren’t already on the brink of crisis, league legend Laurie Daley signalled a huge issue with Suaalii’s deal.
He believes up and coming rugby union players will be seeking “inflated” contracts in line with their rugby league recruits.
“There’s a lot of many at stake for young Joseph, but I also know there’s a lot of young kids after Suaalii signed that deal that will be asking for a lot of money,” Daley said.
“So rugby union have created a inflated market for themselves.”
“It affects their pathways in that kids are expecting decent money that isn’t there,” Rothfield added.
“You know yourself rugby league have gone in to the GPS schools, rugby’s traditional nursery, and they are taking most of the kids.
“Rugby is in massive crisis and I don’t know how they are going to get out of it.”
Originally published as ‘Wouldn’t be surprised’: Wallabies’ worst nightmare as Suaalii’s $5m deal ‘in doubt’