This story first appeared in Monday’s League Express.
Salford half-back Jackson Hastings has dropped the clearest hint yet over his future – telling League Express he’s seen nothing to tell him to leave the Red Devils after this season.
Hastings was again instrumental on Saturday as Salford took another step towards Super League survival, after beating Widnes 32-6 to make it two wins from two in the Qualifiers.
Red Devils sources told League Express the club’s first priority was ensuring Hastings and fellow recruit Joey Lussick settled into life in England – but they are confident they can put a deal together to secure both players if Super League survival is secured.
His short-term deal expires in a few weeks, but Hastings said: “I didn’t have a mindset either way when I came in regards to staying.
“I wanted to prove to myself I could still play at a high level and I wanted to repay the club. It’s a cliche that all Australians come over here just to get paid: from my point of view, that’s a load of rubbish.
“I’m in a very good space here and I love the club – there’s nothing telling me not to stay, that’s for sure. There’s nothing definite to say I’m on my way home or vice-versa.. that’s all up to my management.”
Hastings also spoke in a complimentary manner of Salford as a club – saying they have ticked all the boxes for him since his arrival from Manly.
“I’ve never not loved the game,” he said of his exit from the NRL.
“I’ve loved it for as long as I can remember. I’ve had some tough days in the last couple of years and there’s been times where I’ve wondered if I really want to do this anymore.
“I take full ownership for the situations I’ve put myself in but the boys around this club have made me feel welcome. I want to do this jersey proud and do the fans proud because it’s a great club. Everything I’ve seen of Salford going forward, the club is in a good place.”
And Hastings also insisted Salford’s priority in the Qualifiers is not simply survival. He said: “The goal is to win every single game. If you go in with the mindset of just wanting to be safe.. that’s a terrible mindset. We’re approaching these Qualifiers trying to win every time we play. There’s a fantastic buzz around training.”