Molong product Cody Ramsey is on the verge of being offered a new deal despite having not played in more than a year, according to media reports.
The St George Illawarra Dragons player was sidelined for the entire 2023 season after being diagnosed with ulcerative colitis, an inflammatory bowl condition, in late 2022.
The initial diagnosis was then followed by an extended stay in hospital and significant bowel surgery, making any return to rugby league for the following season impossible.
While there is no timeline surrounding a return, the Nine Newspapers are reporting St George is negotiating to extend Ramsey's contract to the end of 2025.
The club is yet to finalise its 30-man roster for the upcoming season and any deal remains unfinalised but would involve Ramsey dropping out of the roster and being paid by the club outside the salary cap.
It is unclear whether he will ever play rugby league again but it has not stopped the club backing their player, as evidenced by statements made earlier in 2023 by Dragons general manager Ben Haran.
"Our focus will be on Cody's medical rehabilitation and wellbeing in the first phase," Haran said.
"He's been in and around training with the players and coaches recently and is having a hugely positive impact on all of us at the club.
"Cody is a great character who is one of the most passionate, popular and respected members of our club and will have a significant impact on the success of the team over the coming season."
The 23-year old Cabonne Roos junior had made 36 appearances for the joint venture club across three seasons and had established himself in the fullback position before his diagnosis.
The Dragons will return to Mudgee in 2024 to face Wests Tigers in the NRL pre-season.
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