New Zealand Warriors captain Roger Tuivasa-Sheck has rejected overtures from rugby union and rival Telstra Premiership clubs to sign a contract extension that will keep him at the club until the end of the 2023 season.
Hours after Warriors coach Stephen Kearney said it was a matter of ‘’when’’ and not ‘’if’’ the Kiwi international confirmed that his future would be with the Auckland-based club, Tuivasa-Sheck and club CEO Cameron George delivered the news fans of the club had been waiting to hear.
Tuivasa-Sheck told the Warriors website he was now ready to join his teammates in lifting the team out of the hole they have found themselves in over recent years.
“Now that I have signed … I’m ready to go. I am all focused about getting my body right, getting the team right, getting my head in the right place for round one,’’ he said.
After shooting to prominence when playing a leading role in the Sydney Roosters’ premiership run in 2013, Tuivasa-Sheck played his first game with the Warriors in 2016.
With his future settled, the time for lifting the Warriors back into the NRL finals – a stage they haven’t visited since 2011 – has arrived.
“It [re-signing] ticked all the boxes for me, I really had to sit down and work out my future,’’ Tuivasa-Sheck said.
“It is a time in [my] life when I am happy with where I am, being in Auckland.
“The last couple of years it hasn’t been going so well, I am fired up to see where we can take this club.
“Signing a four-year deal, I am all in, and excited to see where we can go.’’
After having spent the early years of his career making sure he repaid his parents for what they had given him, Tuivasa-Sheck said he now wanted to set himself up for the future.
“When I was younger it was all about providing for my parents and giving back for what they’ve done for me. I feel that I’ve ticked that box,’’ he said.
“Now it is the next step in life when it is me and my family … we really enjoy being in Auckland and that is why we chose to stay.
“The other one [factor in re-signing] was the football side of things. It is a massive privilege to be named captain for an NRL team. I am really taking it upon me to step up and want to drive this place.
“The challenge is still there, that is what drives me to get up every morning, to come in and prove people wrong and take this club somewhere.’’
George said Tuivasa-Sheck’s decision to re-sign marked a great day for the club.
“For us it demonstrates that together, as a club and our playing group, we are all trying to buy into what we are trying to achieve over the next couple of years,’’ he said
“Roger is going to lead us forward, and will play a massive part in our future.
“He has the potential to be one of the best we have ever seen. Roger has the opportunity now to lead this club into uncharted waters and create the first premiership for us.’’