WakefielD Trinity Wildcats have moved to secure Australian scrum-half Tim Smith on a new 12-month deal.
The former Wigan Warriors half-back has gradually grown in stature this season after joining from Cronulla Sharks and is seen as an integral part of the Wildcats’ future by coach Richard Agar.
Smith, 27, was out of contract at the end of the campaign and had attracted some outside interest with his improving displays.
However, he has opted to stay with the West Yorkshire club where his partnership with on-loan Bradford Bull Paul Sykes has recently been thriving.
Smith, who has endured a chequered career, was one of 18 new signings when Agar arrived from Hull FC last autumn.
“I’m really happy with the new deal and hopefully we’re building for something good here at Wakefield,” he said. “We’re definitely on the way up and I’m enjoying my time.
“We had 18 new players and a new coach so it was probably a little bit tough at the start.
“But we all get on really well and that’s a good thing. Rich has given a few indications of where we’re going and it’s really good so I’m really happy to be here for another 12 months.
“I’m pretty happy with my form and want to continue with that through the rest of the year.”
The gifted Smith has created 19 tries for his colleagues to make him one of Super League’s top playmakers.
He has also crossed five times himself, including the clinching try in a derby win over Castleford Tigers at Magic Weekend.
Agar, whose side entertain champions Leeds Rhinos on Monday night, said: “It may have been seen as a gamble by some when we signed Tim.
“But his experience and influence on our side has evolved as the season has gone on and that’s shown by being amongst the leaders in try assists in Super League.
“His organisational skills and the quality of his service has been invaluable to us throughout the campaign.
“I feel great pride that Timmy has been able to come to the Wildcats and rebuild his career in the game when it looked at one point that he might fade out of it,” he said.
“He’s put himself in a position where other clubs have sat up and taken note but he’s happy to commit to us and I know he’ll continue to repay the faith we’ve shown in him.”
Hull Kingston Rovers have signed New Zealand prop forward Evarn Tuimavave, 28, from Newcastle Knights on a two-year contract starting next season.