‘Hurry up and sign’, Katoa tells Dolphins rake JMK

Joel Gould |

Dolphins hooker Jeremy Marshall-King (L) and Isaiya Katoa (R) are both long-term prospects.
Dolphins hooker Jeremy Marshall-King (L) and Isaiya Katoa (R) are both long-term prospects.

Dolphins half Isaiya Katoa put the hard word on hooker Jeremy Marshall-King about re-signing with the club and his wish is set to be granted.

Katoa, 20, inked an extension through until the end of 2028 in April and Marshall-King, already on contract for next year, is on the cusp of doing the same.

When Dolphins coach Wayne Bennett signed with South Sydney as head coach for three seasons from next year there were fears Marshall-King may follow.

That won’t happen, with the 28-year-old on the cusp of signing a new deal and playing under head coach in-waiting Kristian Woolf.

“He is obviously a great player,” Katoa said.

“It is actually pretty funny. I had a word to him the other day. I was like, ‘Mate, if you don’t sign the contract …’

“I was just telling him to hurry up and sign it.

“He is probably one of the guys that go under the radar, just with all the strike we have in the outside backs and forward pack. He doesn’t get the praise he deserves. He does so much work, not only for the middles but also for us halves to play off the back of.”

Katoa, one of the game’s most promising playmakers, was not backward in coming forward about how hard he fought to keep Marshall-King a Dolphin.

“It is great having him here at the moment but I have been getting up him and telling him to hurry up and sign,” Katoa said.

“He is not leaving. If I am here, he is staying with me. Hopefully that all goes to plan.”

Marshall-King is unsung outside the Dolphins walls but has established himself as one of the NRL’s most consistent and effective rakes.

He is a major reason why the Dolphins are in the top four ahead of Thursday night’s trip to Cronulla.

Dolphins CEO Terry Reader said the club was on the cusp of making an announcement about former Canterbury No.9 Marshall-King.

“The club is really relaxed about where that is,” Reader said.

“There is nothing signed yet but we hopefully have some news to make about that soon.

“Jeremy is an important part of our team and him and his family have come up here and really enjoyed life. I am pretty confident he doesn’t want to go anywhere.”