This article was originally in the December 12th edition of League Express. To read the biggest stories first, buy League Express every week in stores or online at https://pocketmags.com/league-express-magazine.
Wakefield Trinity are planning to enter contract negotiations with Jacob Miller.
The halfback is out of contract at the end of the 2017 season and has become a top priority for head coach Chris Chester following Warrington’s recent interest in luring the 24-year-old away from Belle Vue.
Warrington enquired about the halfback as a potential replacement for Chris Sandow, although they eventually signed Kevin Brown.
However, the threat of losing Miller to one of their Super League rivals has heightened the urgency to tie the halfback down to a new deal before he is free to speak to other clubs.
Miller joined Wakefield ahead of the 2015 season, emerging as one of the club’s star players in their impressive 2016 campaign. He made 32 consecutive appearances for the club this year before missing the final few games of the Super 8s to undergo shoulder surgery.
With interest in Miller inevitable among other clubs, Chester is confident that Wakefield can convince him to sign a long-term deal.
“We want to build a team around Jacob Miller,” he said.
“We weren’t prepared to listen to any interest from him. We’ve never really been able to hold on to our top talent. Generally, the rule of thumb was to hold on and get as much money for them as we possibly could. But we don’t want to be in that position, we want to keep hold of our best players, and Jacob was that last season.
“It’s really important that we have a sit down with Milky and look at extending his contract.
“He’s a Wakefield player for next year certainly and hopefully for a few more after that yet. He’s a key player to this club moving forward, so we’d like to get negotiations in place and try to tie him down.
“There’s going to be interest from the so-called bigger clubs of the game, but we’ll fight tooth and nail to keep Milky in Wakefield. He’s really enjoying his rugby, his partner and kids are enjoying their time in Wakefield as well, and that’s important to his happiness.
“We’re in a good position and I’m hopeful and confident we can get something done with Milky long-term.”