Panthers young gun inks new deal

Panthers young gun inks new deal

Rising Penrith Panthers five-eighth Jarome Luai has landed a three-year contract extension with the club.

The new deal means the 24-year-old will remain at the Panthers until the end of the 2024 season.

Luai said he was rapt to recommit to the club after rising through its development system as a St Marys junior.

“I feel blessed to know I’ll be at Panthers for the next four years,” Luai said.

“This is my home. This is where I grew up. This is my family. Every time I pull on that jersey, I’m playing for all those things and more.

“I think it’s going to be a great season and I’m just really excited to get out there and play some footy.”

Luai made his NRL debut in 2018 and made Penrith’s No.6 jersey his own last year, after the departure of James Maloney.

Penrith coach Ivan Cleary praised Luai’s impact on the squad.

“I first watched Jarome playing alongside Nathan (Cleary) as a 15-year-old,” Cleary said.

“He had to wait a little bit longer to cement his spot in the NRL but the natural combination those two have will be vital for our club over the coming years.

“Jarome’s value to our team is more than just his individual skills. He has an ability to connect the players around him, which is crucial to our success.

“I look forward to working with him and watching his game continue to grow in the seasons ahead.”

Jarome Luai scores against the Warriors last season. (AAP)

Luai last year carved out a breakout season as the Panthers won 17 games in a row en route to a grand final berth.

The Samoan international was selected in the NSW Blues’ extended squad and played in the Maori All Stars side’s victory against the Indigenous All Stars last weekend.

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