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Canberra Raiders halfback Josh McCrone shopped to the Melbourne Storm

Josh McCrone's Raiders future is unclear.

Josh McCrone's Raiders future is unclear. Photo: Jeffrey Chan

Off-contract Raiders halfback Josh McCrone has been shopped to the Melbourne Storm despite Canberra facing the prospect of missing out on the signature of Michael Ennis.

Ennis and his wife toured Raiders headquarters on Monday, but the Bulldogs dummy-half is leaning towards the Sharks. 

Ennis and his family live in the Sutherland Shire and staying in Sydney will allow the 30-year-old to continue his commentary work with Fox Sports. 

The Raiders are still in negotiations with Penrith winger Josh Mansour and remain optimistic he will follow Tigers fullback James Tedesco to the national capital. 

McCrone's name has been raised to the Storm as a possible option for next season in the halves alongside Test and Origin star Cooper Cronk.

However, the Storm hasn't decided whether it will pursue McCrone or go in another direction.

The Storm may also not be able to afford McCrone's asking price after it recently re-signed back-rower Kevin Proctor alongside its big three of Cronk, Cameron Smith and Billy Slater.

McCrone would be the perfect foil in the No.6 jersey, something the Storm hasn't had since the departure of Gareth Widdop to the Dragons at the end of last season.

Journeyman Ben Roberts has been named at five-eighth for this weekend's game with the North Queensland Cowboys.

McCrone's experience of more than 100 NRL games would also come in handy for the Storm during the representative period when it is traditionally one of the clubs most affected.

McCrone has a family link with the Storm, with brother-in-law and former Raider Ryan Hinchcliffe a regular in its first-grade side.

The Raiders are keen to retain McCrone, but it's uncertain what role he would play next year.

The 27-year-old started the season at hooker, but has recently reverted back to the halves after the Raiders shifted Jack Wighton from five-eighth and back to the centres.

Exciting youngster Mitch Cornish is going to push for the starting halfback position next season after an impressive 15-minute cameo off the bench in his NRL debut in last weekend's 42-12 thrashing of the North Queensland Cowboys.

Raiders captain and five-eighth Terry Campese is contracted with the Raiders until the end of 2015.

Tedesco will join the Raiders next season on a three-year deal reported to be worth $1.9 million as a replacement for Brisbane Broncos-bound Anthony Milford.

The Raiders remain in the running for Mansour and hope to have an answer back from him by the end of the week.

They are also still finalising details on a deal for St George Illawarra Dragons second-rower Joel Thompson, who is keen to return to Canberra for personal reasons.

Thompson left the Raiders at the end of last season, but would be a valuable addition to the forward pack.

The Raiders won't be renewing the contract of international prop Tom Learoyd-Lahrs, who is still discussing a move to a rival club before the June 30 deadline.

McCrone has played every game for the Raiders for the past two seasons and has been one of the team's most consistent performers during that time.

He made his representative debut for Country last year and retained his spot as the replacement dummy-half for this year's game against City.

2 comments so far

  • The most consistent player for the Raiders in the last 2 years.........if I was Ricky I'd be trying to convince Campo to go elsewhere

    Commenter
    Don
    Location
    Canberra
    Date and time
    May 31, 2014, 7:37AM
    • McCrone needs to be retained. He may not be the most naturally-gifted player in the NRL, but he has stuck solid and never let the Raiders down. By all means sign new talent, but don't throw the baby out with the bath water. If nothing else McCrone is a better dummy half than Buttriss.

      Commenter
      Brisraider
      Location
      Queensland
      Date and time
      May 31, 2014, 12:53PM

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      Round 24
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      CRO 40vs WST 18 Report Stats
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      Round 25
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      GCT 28vs STG 26 Stats
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      CBR ($1.50)vs PEN ($2.65) 19:30GIO
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      Round 26
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      NQL ($1.18)vs GCT ($4.60) 19:301300
      Sun, 06 SepTimes shown AEST
      PAR ($1.83)vs CBR ($1.91) 14:00Pirtek
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      CBY ($1.06)vs NZW ($8.00) 18:30ANZ
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      NRL Ladder 2015
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      Brisbane Broncos 23 17 6 0 38
      North Queensland Cowboys 23 16 7 0 36
      Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks 23 14 9 0 32
      Melbourne Storm 23 13 10 0 30
      Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs 23 13 10 0 30
      South Sydney Rabbitohs 23 13 10 0 30
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