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SAD NEWS: Nathan cleary have been benched and suspended and given four match bans for…..

Some player moves in the market are a mere formality, while others appear out of the blue.

 

In the space of two days this week, there were prime examples of both with Zac Lomax ending his long flirtation with Parramatta by signing on the dotted line following his upcoming release from the Dragons. On the other hand, the departure of James Fisher-Harris to the New Zealand Warriors took just about everyone by surprise.

The three-time premiership-winning enforcer has been stationed at the foot of the mountains for a decade and has come to embody the famed Panthers culture.

 

The 28-year-old has become a relentless winner – scooping up premiership after premiership, while leading the Kiwis to the inaugural Pacific Championship title last year as their skipper.

 

The reigning golden boot winner has helped transform Penrith’s pack into the most feared in the league, with his brutal defence allowing the Panthers to suffocate their opposition.

The leadership and cultural impact he has displayed since coming into first grade has been outstanding,” Ivan Cleary noted.

 

“He’s evolved into one of the game’s elite players and coaching him has been a pleasure.”

 

Fisher-Harris needs just 17 more appearances to reach the 200-game milestone in Penrith colours after debuting for the club in 2016.

 

His exit continues an extensive list of departures with JFH now joining Jarome Luai on the ‘last ride’, a year on from Stephen Crichton adopting a similar approach and two years removed from Viliame Kikau and Api Koroisau’s long goodbyes.

 

In recent years, the club’s production line has pumped out talent to cover for the player drain yet Fisher-Harris’ exit to the Warriors may finally have them venturing into the market as well as having the capacity to retain more of their local juniors.

 

Sunia Turuva has been edging towards the door for some time although that could have now changed with the club able to up their offer for the Dally M Rookie of the Year, if they wish.

 

This, of course, would be bad news for the Dragons who have been strongly linked to the Fijian.

“The leadership and cultural impact he has displayed since coming into first grade has been outstanding,” Ivan Cleary noted.

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