Maitland is in danger of losing newly-crowned Newcastle player of the year Adam Clydsdale next season with his playing future under a cloud because his partner Yasmin Meakes has moved to Sydney after landing a fulltime contract to play Rugby Seven’s for Australia.
Clydsdale, who also claimed the players’ player award at Wednesday night’s Newcastle Rugby League presentation dinner, is certain to relocate to Sydney to be with Meakes and doesn’t know if he will continue his playing career.
“I’m not too sure what I’m doing yet to be honest,” Clydsdale said.
“Yasmin’s moved down already and she has a contract for two years and I’m that proud of her. It’s a great opportunity for her and look, she’s a Newcastle girl who came with me to Canberra so it’s probably payback time.
“I might become a WAG.”
The former Knights and Canberra Raiders hooker has told Maitland officials if he plays, it will be with the Pickers.
“I’ve talked to Frank [Lawler, president] and I told him if I play, I’ll play for Maitland but I’m not sure what’s on the cards yet,” he said.
“It’s something Yasmin and myself are going to have to talk about and we’ll see what happens.”
Pickers coach Luke Dorn said the club will do what it can to retain Clydsdale, even if it means he only trains one session a week and comes up for games on the weekend.
“If you want the best players, sometimes you have to sacrifice a little bit as well so if we can make it work with Clydy, we would be silly not to really,” Dorn said.
“Maybe if it was his first year, only having him come in at the end of the week to train and play might be hard to justify to the group but seeing the dedication that he has shown through the year to miss only one session and play every minute of every game, I don’t think it would be too hard to swallow for anyone at the club.
“He’s just so dedicated and influential and really drove a lot of the boys and just raised the standards so hopefully, we can keep hold of him. But in local footy, obviously there are other things that come first.”
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Clydsdale said he has no regrets about walking away from a contract at the Raiders to play in the Newcastle competition and said he has never enjoyed his footy more.
“I went to Maitland not knowing Luke Dorn and we’ve become real good mates. He’s a great coach and he’s going to go further as a coach,” he said.
“And Maitland is a really good club with some really good people involved that is going places so I’ve got no regrets at all.”