YESTERDAY, Brisbane Broncos wonderkid Karl Oloapu revealed that he had been frustrated by the Red Hill club.
In fact, it was a statement so powerful that the Wide World of Sports believes that Oloapu could be heading for rugby union or even Super League.
Signed by the Broncos on a three-year deal in January, Oloapu was recently named player of the tournament at this year’s national under 18s championships, but the Australian Schoolboys captain has also reportedly refused to train with the Broncos for preseason.
But, which three Super League clubs could possibly go in for Oloapu if the teenager becomes available?
The Rhinos currently have one quota space left following the retirement of Australian forward Matt Prior. And with Oloapu just 17 years of age, the youngster fits into Rohan Smith’s philosophy of attracting younger players with a point to prove at Headingley. With Oloapu able to play in the halves, it would provide more than adequate back-up for Aidan Sezer and Blake Austin with both current Leeds halfbacks on the wrong side of 30. It is the move that probably makes the most sense in terms of a Super League move.
Catalans have made no bones about their desire to refresh and start again for 2023 after a disappointing 2022 Super League season. Head coach Steve McNamara has already brought in Manu Ma’u from Hull FC and Siosiua Taukeiaho from Sydney Roosters, but he has also shown the door to halfback Josh Drinkwater and forward Dylan Napa, enabling the Dragons to sign more overseas quality if those two do indeed leave. That would therefore leave the door open for Oloapu to join the French club and experience a climate similar to the one in Queensland.
There has been much said in recent weeks about Warrington Wolves’ potential link with Catalans halfback Josh Drinkwater, but with no deal forthcoming as of yet, it makes sense to link Daryl Powell’s side to Oloapu. With Gareth Widdop departing at the end of 2022, Powell has been searching for a replacement and though youngsters Riley Dean and Leon Hayes impressed when given the chance last season, there could certainly be room for one more within the Warrington ranks. Cue Oloapu.