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Titans hopeful Hayne to sign new NRL deal

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 29/03/2017 Mitchell Van Homrigh

Gold Coast coach Neil Henry is hopeful Jarryd Hayne signs a contract extension for the 2018 NRL season.

Hayne, still battling a long-term ankle injury, has only played eight games for the Titans since penning his $1.2 million a season deal in August 2016.

The two-time Dally M Medallist impressed early, kicking a match-winning field goal in his second game in his NRL return.

He played six games for Gold Coast in 2016 and had been dogged by rumours about his commitment. The former NFL player spoke favourably about the strength of his old club Parramatta and was fined by the Titans' leadership group for his attitude to training.

Hayne also has European rugby teams circling for his signature and has entertained the thought of not playing any sport in his immediate future.

He has just over a month to make a decision about his contract with the Titans. Henry said this week he would like to see Hayne.

"It's up to him to make a decision about that but we should know by May. Hopefully, it's in the affirmative and he sticks around and plays some good footy here," Henry said.

Hayne was seen jumping excitedly last Saturday when the Titans took on North Queensland, but Henry said his return was still weeks away.

"He might have been jumping around, but he hasn't run yet. He's at least out of the (moon) boot but I'd say he's at least three weeks away," Henry said.

"We've got an anti-gravitational treadmill that the guys can use now, so he'll start doing that.

"It's going to be a bit of a process since he's had significant damage to his ankle."

One reason for Hayne to sign his contract early would be to state his intentions for this year's State of Origin series.

If Hayne can prove his fitness in three weeks, he will come back against Cronulla on April 22. This gives him just over a month to impress Blues coach Laurie Daley.

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