NSW has a long list of off-contract players.
The New South Wales Waratahs are facing a marathon of contract negotiating with over 80 percent of their current frontline squad off-contract at the end of the season, according to The Daily Telegraph.
Coach Michael Cheika has inherited a nightmare contract battle from previous coaching administrations and twenty-nine of the 35 Waratahs players currently have contracts that end this season.
Cheika will need to negotiate with the individual parties in order to keep his team together following the end of the 2013 season.
The contracts are complicated with many of the Waratahs players in question also representing the Wallabies and therefore on ARU top-ups.
The dual-contracting policies of the ARU make the process of negotiating contracts with the players infinitely more difficult as Cheika will need to estimate how much the ruling body would offer each player and tailor his offers accordingly.
The NSW coach has made it clear he knows which players he will be negotiating with and hopes to have all issues regarding retention and recruitment of players resolved by their bye week in April.
Regardless, an upbeat Cheika said: “We’ve got some good retention stuff happening, a few balls in the air still because we’re still waiting for some ARU top-up decisions to be made. But we’re on the way.”
The Waratahs will start the season under a cloud of uncertainty until players can confirm contracts with the club. Until then the team that begins the 2014 season could well be a very different looking team from the current one.