The Melbourne Storm have confirmed that Fijian flyer Sisa Waqa and Tim Glasby will leave the club at the conclusion of the 2015 season.
Waqa, who has played 59 games for the club so far including the 2012 Grand Final, has penned a two-year deal with the Canberra Raiders in some much-needed positive news on the recruitment front for Ricky Stuart's men.
Storm football director Frank Ponissi told NRL.com last week that the club would not be able to re-sign all the players it wanted as it began to feel the salary-cap squeeze.
The signatures of captain Cameron Smith, Jesse Bromwich, Kevin Proctor and Tohu Harris have begun to have a roll-on effect.
Along with Waqa and Glasby, Ryan Hoffman (Warriors), Mitch Garbutt (Broncos), Cody Walker (Rabbitohs), Ben Roberts & Junior Moors (Castleford Tigers) will leave the club at the end of the year while Matt Lodge joined West Tigers last month.
That currently makes it a total of eight personnel changes for the Storm.
Waqa’s loss will be sorely felt.
He has scored 11 tries in 16 games this season and has formed a formidable partnership down the right with centre Will Chambers in recent seasons.
One club’s loss is another’s gain though with the Green Machine thrilled to have the Fijian Flyer join their ranks.
“Sisa is an experienced player with an outstanding try scoring rate and we are excited about him joining our club in 2015,” said Raiders CEO Don Furner.
“We’re looking forward to him being with the club for the next two years and wish him all the best for the remainder of his time at the Melbourne Storm.”
Storm Football Director Frank Ponissi spoke of Waqa as an extremely liked member of the club.
“Sisa was contracted for another season [though] he received an offer from the Raiders that was too good to refuse. He has a young family to look after and we weren’t going to stand in the way in doing what’s best for them,” Ponissi said.
“We know Sisa will be committed and focused on finishing the season well with Melbourne Storm... and he and his family will always be welcome at the club.”
In a further blow for the Storm, forward Glasby will also head north to the North Queensland Cowboys for two years. Glasby has managed to play seven NRL games during his two year stint with the club and will leave a hole in the club's forward depth.
North Queensland Cowboys General Manager Peter Parr had nothing but praise for Glasby following his signing to the club.
"We’re very happy that Tim has decided to come to the Cowboys to continue his NRL career,” Peter Parr said.
“He’s someone who has impressed us with his ability at the Intrust Super Cup level and then in the NRL when he’s had his chances at Melbourne.”