New Leeds Rhinos deal for Rhyse Martin as Konrad Hurrell and King Vuniyayawa exit confirmed

Leeds Rhinos have confirmed Papua New Guinea captain Rhyse Martin is staying at the club next year - but centre Konrad Hurrell and prop King Vuniyayawa are moving on.

By Peter Smith
Friday, 3rd September 2021, 10:46 am

As revealed in The Yorkshire Evening Post last week, Martin has agreed a one-year contract extension which will keep him at Rhinos in 2022.

The 28-year-old goal-kicking second-rower joined Rhinos midway through the 2019 season from NRL side Canterbury Bulldogs and has scored 372 points in 45 appearances and has an 83.72 per cent success rate with the boot during 2021.

“I am pleased to have got my future agreed," Martin said.

Rhyse Martin scores against Catalans Dragons. Picture by Jonathan Gawthorpe.

"It took a bit longer than we all wanted but I am very happy to have got it sorted now and I’m looking forward to finishing this year without that on my mind and finishing the season strongly. "

He added: “There is a good spirit in the camp at the moment ahead of a big game against Hull FC this Saturday at the Magic Weekend.

"It feels like the play-offs are starting early.

"They are in the same boat as us whereby every win is crucial.

Konrad Hurrell. PIcture by Jonathan Gawthorpe.

"We have to focus on our performance and hopefully it will be one of the games of the season for us and we can get the win."

Rhinos coach Richard Agar said: “I am pleased for Rhyse that he has agreed a new deal.

"I know he has felt at home here at the Rhinos and is an integral part of our squad.

"His goal kicking has been a big asset to our team this season and he is a popular member of our group.

King Vuniyayawa. Picture by Tony Johnson.

“He will be a big part of our squad next season as we look to build strength in our pack in particular. "

Hurrell and Vuniyayawa have both turned down a new contract offer from the club and will move on at the end of this season.

Hurrell, as also revealed in the YEP, is poised to join St Helens, with Vuniyayawa heading for Salford Red Devils, though neither move has been officially confirmed.

Agar said: “It is disappointing to see Konrad and King leave the club but that is the nature of a salary cap sport.

"They have been integral members of our squad this season and, in Konrad’s case, for a number of years.

“Konrad has been a fantastic player for Leeds Rhinos since he moved to Emerald Headingley.

"He has been a great team mate and personality and I know he has a wonderful rapport with our fans because of the passion he always brings to the Leeds Rhinos shirt.

“When King joined us we took a chance on him, but he took a chance on us too.

"It is a credit to him and his work this year that he has now received multiple offers for his future.

"We fully understand he is looking after his longer term future with his next contract and, whilst we are sad to see him go, I am pleased for him.

“They will both have a big part to play this season within our group and will leave with our best wishes and thanks at the end of the campaign."

The departure of Hurrell and Vuniyayawa will open up an extra vacancy on Rhinos' overseas quota.

Support the YEP and become a subscriber today. Enjoy unlimited access to local news and the latest on Leeds United, With a digital subscription, you see fewer ads, enjoy faster load times, and get access to exclusive newsletters and content. Click here to subscribe.