Sailor | How 'Smart' Bulldogs Lured Stephen Crichton

'Massive In Any Code'

Article heading image for Sailor | How 'Smart' Bulldogs Lured Stephen Crichton


Dual code legend Wendell Sailor has applauded Bulldogs boss Phil Gould, with Canterbury reportedly set to sign two-time premiership-winning Panthers centre Stephen Crichton to a long-term deal.

Leading NRL journalist James Hooper, who's part of the Triple M NRL team, wrote on Fox Sports Australia that Crichton will sign a four-year deal worth $3.3 million, starting in 2024.

Crichton's impending signature comes just months after Gould and the Bulldogs landed new coach Cameron Ciraldo from Penrith.

Canterbury's pursuit of Crichton adds to a list of Penrith staff and players to join the Bulldogs, with fellow two-time premiership-winning Panther Viliame Kikau joining the club this season.

"It's quite smart from Phil Gould. Gould obviously wanted Cameron Ciraldo and he's got a five-year deal," Sailor said on Triple M's Rush Hour.

"With that five-year deal, he (Ciraldo) knows the players who are coming off [contract], but also, a player-coach's trust is massive in any sort of code and that's what they're doing here."

News of Crichton's deal follows comments made by journalist Brent Read, who revealed to Triple M's Rush Hour on Tuesday that coach Ciraldo pushed for Crichton to be lured away from Penrith during his own contract talks.

"Cameron Ciraldo in his interviews with clubs, I know he was saying to clubs that the one player he wanted to make a priority of signing, if he came to their club, was Stephen Crichton," Read said.

19 January 2023

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