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Warriors deny Steve Matai chase

The Warriors deny they made an attempt to lure Manly's Steve Matai to Mount Smart despite numerous reports suggesting otherwise.

It's understood that Matai, who has played 12 Tests for the Kiwis, twice requested an early release from the remaining one year on his contract at Brookvale Oval and is seriously considering a move across the ditch.

Although Warriors coach Andrew McFadden admitted the club had at one point considered recruiting the 29-year-old centre, reports by Australian media of a four-year offer worth $2.5million were wide of the mark.

"I was surprised about that report," McFadded said in an interview with RadioLive.

"We certainly haven't tabled anything to Steve.

"Earlier in the season when I first took over we identified that centres was a bit of an issue for us. We were struggling to get 80-minute performances out there.

"We did go looking for centres and Steve's name was linked to us but obviously he had a contract with Manly."

While reports from both Australian and New Zealand media suggest there was in fact a formal offer in place, McFadden rated the chances of Matai coming to the Warriors as "very unlikely."

McFadden pointed to a long list of centres already contracted to the club, including Konrad Hurrell, Ngani Laumape, Dane Nielsen and incoming Raiders rookie Matt Allwood, as the reason Matai would not fit into the Warriors set-up.

Meanwhile, Nielsen, touted as a 'marquee signing' has failed to deliver since he arrived fresh from winning an NRL premiership with Melbourne in 2012 and was relegated to the New South Wales Cup before Laumape's suspension saw him return to the first grade side last month.

He is contracted to the end of the 2015 season but it's unlikely the Warriors will look to extend his stay.

While Allwood will be a project for the future, Laumape can fill the left centre spot but isn't considered a long-term option.

Steve Matai after he was punched by Mitchell Allgood


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