Tom Makinson commits to St Helens after declining NRL offers

England winger Tom Makinson has pledged his future to St Helens after knocking back offers from the NRL.

The 27-year-old shot to prominence in 2018 with a series of impressive performances for England, culminating in him winning the Golden Boot as international player of the year.

Makinson spoke at the time of his award of his desire to try his luck in the NRL and speculation soared down under when he was spotted with Newcastle Knights coach Nathan Brown, his former Saints boss, during a holiday in Australia.

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However, Makinson recently spoke of his wish to see out the remaining two years on his contract with St Helens and on Wednesday signed an extension which takes him to the end of 2022.

The announcement follows news of a fresh deal for club captain James Roby and comes on the eve of Thursday’s opening game of the new Betfred Super League season against Wigan, when Makinson will make his 200th appearance for the club.

Chairman Eamonn McManus said: “It’s further great news for St Helens and for Super League that Tommy has committed himself to us for four years.

“Tommy has been underestimated outside of St Helens for too many years. That was firmly put to bed with his recent stand-out performances for England against the Kiwis.

“He has chosen St Helens and Super League despite very attractive offers from the NRL.

“It’s therefore a real statement of his faith in St Helens and in Super League that he has decided to extend his contract with us.

“He’s a world-class winger and it’s wonderful that he aims to see out his career with his boyhood club.”

Makinson, whose hat-trick on only his third Test appearance helped England to a series-clinching win over New Zealand at Anfield in November, has scored 108 tries in his 199 appearances for his club.

St Helens coach Justin Holbrook added: “This is huge news for everyone involved with St Helens to have Tommy sign for four years.

“He’s a fantastic player and what you see on the field is exactly what we see every day in training.

“I’m very happy for him to get the rewards he got at the end of last year with the recognition of winning the Golden Boot and being named in the Dream Team.

“He is extremely hard working and is a pleasure to coach.”

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