The article below continues the NRL Warrior 2017 Storylines series, where we ponder the potential storylines of the upcoming season. If you missed it, click here for Part 1
7 March 2017
NRL registers Foran’s contract with immediate effect
Almost six months after Kieran Foran put pen to paper with the New Zealand Warriors, the NRL has today determined that he is fit to return to the game. ‘We are satisfied that Kieran has taken all the necessary steps to prepare himself to contribute in a positive way on the footy field, both for himself and for the game of rugby league. His contract will be registered with immediate effect, meaning he’ll be eligible to be selected for Round 2 . . . We’d like to thank Kieran, and the New Zealand Warriors, for their cooperation during this process,’ said NRL CEO Todd Greenberg in a statement released at 1pm AET. After a 2016 filled with challenges both on and off the field, Foran told reporters that he’s buzzing to get back on the park. ‘The past twelve months have been the most difficult time of my life, and I’m really thankful to have had some good people around me who have helped me get through these tough times. It’s been a long preseason waiting for the contract to be registered, and now I’m buzzing just thinking about being back out there with the boys again, whether it’s this week, next week or whenever.’
The idea of healthy Kieran Foran in a Warriors jersey is enough to get the heart racing. The thought of him steadying the play, driving the side around the field, straightening at the line just enough to free up Shaun Johnson and create space for the outside backs is a more exciting prospect than almost anything I can imagine while wearing clothes. The reports so far, both about his contract registration and his actual physical and mental readiness to play, however, seem to suggest that this process could take quite some time. It’s encouraging that the club continues to express confidence that it will happen — but will it be too late to positively impact the Warriors’ season?