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Kiwis captain Dallin Watene-Zelezniak keen to stay with Bulldogs long-term - 'They've been amazing since day dot'

He joined the club less than two months ago but Dallin Watene-Zelezniak is already keen on re-signing with Canterbury on a long-term NRL deal.

Watene-Zelezniak showed what Penrith are missing out on after starring in the Bulldogs' 16-8 upset over his former club on Saturday night.

It was the first time the Bulldogs No.1 faced the Panthers since his shock move to Belmore on an eyebrow-raising 18-month deal in early June.

And the New Zealand captain has seemingly flourished in his new surrounds, averaging 122 metres since the move, to go with 37 tackle breaks and two tries.

Watene-Zelezniak said he's enjoying playing his preferred position at fullback and is keen on continuing his upward trajectory in the role.

"I still have got a lot to learn," he said.

"I am still learning every time I play and train. I am enjoying my time there and as I have said before, I really love playing there and get some freedom up there."

But while Watene-Zelezniak has impressed his new club, he remains free to talk with rival clubs once the off-season begins on November 1.

It leaves the Bulldogs with a decision to make over their long-term fullback, having already been linked to almost every custodian set to enter the market.

The club is already reported to be preparing a lucrative deal to lure Latrell Mitchell from the Sydney Roosters with the promise of playing fullback.

There is also speculation of an ambitious attempt to attract Manly star Tom Trbojevic.

Tellingly, both players come off-contract for the 2021 season, which is the same season the Bulldogs will be free from their well-documented salary cap issues.

Watene-Zelezniak indicated he would immediately re-sign if an offer was tabled.

"They've been amazing since day dot. It opened my eyes a bit, too. I really, really love this club. I am very grateful they have given me this opportunity," he said.

"If they want to keep me I'll be over the moon.

"It's out of my hands, I just have to keep playing footy and let them do what they need to do. Whatever comes my way I'll take it head on."

NEWCASTLE, AUSTRALIA - JULY 12: Dallin Watene-Zelezniak of the Bulldogs is tackled by the Knights defence during the round 17 NRL match between the Newcastle Knights and the Canterbury Bulldogs at McDonald Jones Stadium on July 12, 2019 in Newcastle, Australia. (Photo by Ashley Feder/Getty Images)
Kiwis captain Dallin Watene-Zelezniak in action for the Bulldogs. Source: Getty


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