St Helens forward Alex Walmsley has stressed that he is no closer to knowing where he will be playing next year – but insists that will not impact on his performances for his current club in 2018.
Walmsley is the subject of much media speculation about what happens following the expiry of his current deal with St Helens at the end of this season, which begins for him and the club against Castleford on Friday night.
But the England international was quick to insist to League Express that nothing is decided, though he did admit he would like to work out his future as quickly as possible.
“There are a lot of conversations to have with a lot of different people,” said Walmsley.
“What I can worry about is playing rugby and I’ll let the relevant people worry about everything else.
“It’s a big decision for my family, too. It’s not just a conversation I’ll have with one person – there will be hundreds of people I’ll be talking to. There’s obviously some interest there and some speculation, but right now, that’s all it is. When things become clearer I’m sure it’ll be very easy to talk about it and discuss it.
“Ideally you want things sorted sooner, rather than later, and it’s no different for me.”
But Walmsley believes the speculation will not detract from his desire to end a run of three consecutive play-off semi-final defeats with St Helens in recent years.
“I don’t think it’ll be difficult to put it to the back of my mind and I can assure everyone that I’m at St Helens for the next twelve months, but going past that, nothing is decided.
“I’ve signed for about nine different clubs since the World Cup, according to the media, but nothing is signed with anyone. There have been no conversations, but one thing I can promise is that I will be giving everything I’ve got for St Helens in 2018. It’s simple enough for me. Whatever happens after that, happens.”
Walmsley also insists that St Helens won’t be distracted by the number of Rugby League pundits who are tipping them as the pre-season favourites to lift the Super League trophy in October.
He said: “We’re happy to be given the tag, and if people want to talk about us, then so be it. I think you take being the favourites with a pinch of salt, especially with what Castleford did last year. They were a breath of fresh air.
“We’ve got a lot of optimism about this year, although we’ve been like that every year since I came here. But Justin (Holbrook) has brought a different ethos to the squad since he’s been here and hopefully we’ll see that pay dividends.”