All eyes will be on Australian playmaker Mitchell Pearce this season following his high-profile switch to ambitious Catalans Dragons.
The 32-year-old half-back has signed a two-year deal, with the option of a third, and is a straight replacement for fellow countryman James Maloney, who retired at the end of the 2021 season.
Newcastle Knights say they agreed to Pearce’s request for a release from the final year of his contract to enable him to join the 2021 Super League Grand Finalists with immediate effect.
??? "I am thrilled to have an
opportunity to play for a proud team like Catalans. They have some of the most passionate fans in the sport and
it is an honour to be able to represent them."
?? @DragonsOfficiel have announce the signing of Mitchell Pearce on a two-year deal. pic.twitter.com/HALWL7gpi1
The arrival of Pearce has added intrigue to Catalans’ roster and indeed their hopes of a claiming a maiden Super League title.
He is short odds to make the Super League Dream Team in 2022 with Sporting Index offering a price of 3/1.
The better value can be found elsewhere with Blake Austin a tempting 12/1 with Sporting Index to earn inclusion in the imaginary line-up, which is a collection of the best 13 players during a Super League season.
Big things are expected of Austin at Leeds Rhinos this season following his close-season switch from Warrington Wolves.
Josh Drinkwater, meanwhile, will partner Pearce at Catalans and is 16/1 with Sporting Index to make the Dream Team, which again offers good value.
While Pearce will undoubtedly take centre stage given his profile, Drinkwater’s educated left boot should again guide Steve McNamara’s side around the park to excellent effect.