Key meeting expected to decide future of Canberra’s key player
The 28-year-old has been sidelined since a medical issue in May.
A crucial meeting early in the new year might determine Canberra forward Corey Harawira-Naera’s playing career.
The Raiders second-rower was rushed off the field during a Round 13 match against South Sydney this year after suffering a seizure, the reason of which is unknown.
Harawira-Naera and the Raiders have been working through a series of tests and meetings to establish the forward’s fitness and potential return to play.
Canberra had expressed some confidence in Harawira-Naera resuming his career in 2024, but the club recently filed for salary cap relief due to the uncertainties surrounding the New Zealand international’s future.
Harawira-Naera is under contract until the end of the 2025 season for almost $1.2 million.
According to News Corp, Harawira-Naera will learn his playing future in January, as a pivotal meeting to evaluate his health and future approaches.
The Raiders have already begun preparing for the possibility that the Auckland-born back-rower will be unable to add to his 123 NRL appearances.
If he is not allowed to return next season, Harawira-Naera is expected to be granted an off-field role with the Raiders.
Harawira-Naera appeared in nine games for Ricky Stuart this season, starting at lock and second row in six of them.
He began his career with Penrith in 2017 and appeared in 46 games for the Panthers before moving to Canterbury, where he appeared in 21 games for the Bulldogs in just one season.
Harawira-Naera moved to Canberra ahead of the 2020 season and has since played 56 games for the Raiders, winning 55% of his games in green while scoring nine tries and registering over 1,200 tackles.