Canberra have signed Wests Tigers fullback James Tedesco on a three-year deal, starting from the 2015 NRL season.
Rising NRL star James Tedesco will leave the Wests Tigers at the end of the season after signing a three-year deal with Canberra from 2015.
The Tigers had been desperate to hang onto the off-contract young fullback but could not match the lucrative offer from the Raiders.
Tedesco will replace current Raiders fullback Anthony Milford who will join Brisbane next year.
Reports emerged at the weekend that the Tigers had issued a 5pm deadline on Monday for Tedesco to decide his future, but both the 21-year-old’s manager Sam Ayoub and club boss Grant Meyer hosed down the claims.
Raiders chief executive Don Furner labelled Tedesco a “marquee” signing, adding that the club had been following his progress through his junior years.
“James is an outstanding young talent who we see as a big signing for the Raiders and we look forward to him joining the club at the beginning of the 2015 season,” Furner said in a statement on Tuesday.
“The Raiders have followed James’s progress from his days at St Gregory’s College Campbelltown and we know being from Camden, James will fit into the lifestyle and culture here in Canberra.
“We wish him a successful season for the remainder of 2014 with the Wests Tigers and look forward to him joining us for pre-season 2015.”
Tedesco is set to return from an ankle injury for the Tigers’ round 13 match against Newcastle on June 8, with the joint-venture enjoying a bye this weekend.
Wests Tigers CEO Grant Mayer said his club couldn’t match what the Raiders were offering.
“The discussions with James’ management were complex. When another club identifies one of our players as their marquee signing we simply cannot compete with that,” Mayer said.
“We wish James well in his new venture and thank him for his dedication and commitment to Wests Tigers over the past eight years.”