Bellamy insists he remains free agent
'Decision is not far off' … Craig Bellamy. Photo: Brendan Esposito
MELBOURNE coach Craig Bellamy took the unusual step of releasing a statement on Thursday in a bid to stop the speculation about his future. It won't work.
''I have not given any undertaking or made any pledge to anyone,'' Bellamy said. ''I am in constant contact with my management and with my financial and legal advisers. We are scheduling further discussions in the coming week. Hopefully, a decision is not that far off.''
The Storm coach is being hotly pursued by St George Illawarra but his indecision is not having a negative affect on the team's preseason. Star halfback Cooper Cronk said the players weren't concerned by the ongoing reports.
Cronk, who experienced similar speculation last year before he signed a new four-year deal with the Storm, said Bellamy had yet to inform the players of his plans.
Last season Cronk was strongly linked to the Gold Coast Titans and also the Dragons, who are believed to have tabled a $5 million offer to Bellamy.
But he refused to be drawn on the reports, believing Bellamy will tell the players as soon as his mind is made up.
''I think they're just reports,'' Cronk told reporters on Thursday.
''I was in a very similar position this time last year and speculation is pure speculation.
''My relationship with Craig is one based on respect and honesty and I'm sure he'll inform me, like he will inform everyone else in due course, when he's made a decision.
''I'm very comfortable with Craig's situation.''
Bellamy has consistently said he wants to have his future settled before Melbourne sets off for the World Club Challenge against Leeds in England on February 22.