Jarryd Hayne at a press conference to announce he will be playing in the Auckland Nines next year.
Jarryd Hayne at a press conference to announce he will be playing in the Auckland Nines next year. DAVID ROWLAND

Hayne joins long list of stars at Nines

RUGBY LEAGUE: First it was Johnathan Thurston and Shaun Johnson, now Jarryd Hayne.

The Gold Coast Titans have confirmed their superstar recruit will be lining up at next year's Auckland Nines.

The former Eel and two-time Dally M winner, who joined the Titans in August after stints with San Francisco in the NFL and in sevens rugby for Fiji, said he was excited about taking part in the pre-season showcase for the first time.

"The guys have told me of the experiences of being in Auckland for the big weekend and I'm looking forward to getting down there, having fun and getting our hands on that trophy,” Hayne said.

"And I'm also looking forward to seeing some of the best players in the world out there - Jonathan Thurston, Shaun Johnson and my skinny mate MVP from last year, Corey Norman.”

Titans coach Neil Henry said Hayne's time in sevens rugby would make him even more dangerous in the nine-a-side game.

"I think he's really suited to playing nines football. Barring injury, Jarryd will be one of the first players picked,” Henry said.

"He'll get a bit more space out there and he carries the ball well. He tried his hand at sevens to try and get over to the Olympics and he'll be no stranger to playing that style of footy.”

Henry also revealed young halves Kane Elgey - who missed the 2016 NRL season with a knee injury - and Ash Taylor were potential starters in the Nines.

Cowboys superstar Thurston has confirmed he will play in the Nines for the first time next year, while Johnson is hoping to help his Warriors side go one better after finishing runners-up last year.



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