Leeds Rhinos coach Richard Agar had praise for both Rob Lui and Konrad Hurrell after the 36-8 play-off semi-final defeat at St Helens brought the curtain down on their time at Leeds.
Australian halfback Lui, 31, who was signed from Salford midway through the 2019 season, is retiring and returning to his home city of Townsville.
Meanwhile Tongs centre Hurrell, 30, a marquee signing from Gold Coast Titans three years ago, is set to link up with his national-team coach Kristian Woolf at St Helens.
“Rob Lui has had a truly wonderful career, playing at the highest level for a long time and he is a champion bloke as well,” said Agar.
“He was in tears. It all hit him straight away, as soon as he came off. He is such a popular guy in our club, even for the relatively short amount of time has been here.
“Konrad is going to a great club – leaving one and joining another.
“He has made a good impression here.
“He is such a popular and engaging guy. He’s the type of guy we will miss, but unfortunately that’s the nature of professional sport and salary caps.”
Fans are still waiting to hear if out-of-contract winger Luke Briscoe, who scored his side’s second try at Saints, will remain at the Rhinos.
Agar accepted his side were well beaten, saying, “They were the better team on the night. We didn’t execute and get to the levels we needed to get to.
“Some of that should be laid at our feet, but also the relentless pressure that they put us under and the speed and power they played with.
“They set the tone defensively very well and made it very difficult for us.
“Our start was nowhere near where we needed it to be (Leeds trailed 14-4 at half-time), but I thought we showed plenty of fight.”
Leeds back Tom Briscoe has been awarded a three-month testimonial by the RFL for his services to the game as he prepares to play his 15th Super League season in 2022.
The 31-year-old England player started his career at Hull, joining the Rhinos in 2014.
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