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St George Illawarra back-rower Tariq Sims has re-signed with the Dragons for a further three seasons.

Off-contract at the end of 2019, the reigning Dragons Player of the Year recipient will now remain at the club until at least the end of the 2022 NRL Telstra Premiership season.

The local Gerringong junior played all but one NRL game for the Red V in 2018 and made his long-awaited State of Origin debut for New South Wales in Game Three.

Sims was pleased to be remain at the club, where he has been since midway through the Dragons' 2016 campaign.

"The Dragons has always been a club I've wanted to play for and represent being from Gerringong. To have the chance to extend my time with this special playing group, it was too good an opportunity to go anywhere else," Sims said.

"Mary (Paul McGregor) is a coach I've always wanted to play for and he has always wanted to coach me, which was very important when I first came to the Dragons. I'd like to think I've taken my opportunities here at the club with both hands.

"The goal is always winning a premiership, but I can't wait to help develop the players coming through," Sims added. "To see some of these young kids kick on in their careers from the Under-20s to the NRL in the coming years will be a real highlight."

Director of Rugby League Pathways and List Management Ian Millward said Sims's retention was crucial in helping the Dragons maintain one of the best forward packs in the NRL.

"There's a lot of things we like about Tariq on the field, but there's also plenty of things we like about him off it. He's a real leader and will be a great mentor for some of our young players," Millward said.

"Tariq personifies personality and commitment, and what he does around the club on and off the field is enormous. His enthusiasm is infectious and his standing in the game at present is very important to our club. 

"He's also a very crucial piece of the jigsaw, locking him in long-term, along with (Jack) de Belin, (Tyson) Frizell, (Paul) Vaughan and (James) Graham."

The Dragons have also signed former Brisbane Broncos outside back Lachlan Maranta on a one-year deal.

Maranta has played 70 NRL games to date, and has spent the past two years at Super Rugby outfit, Queensland Reds.

"Lachlan has played plenty of NRL games over a period of five seasons and proved he was versatile across the outside backs. He's proven so far to be a really good person who trains well, and he'll bring experience to the squad," Millward said.

"Mitch Allgood is a good example in the sense of Lachlan's signing, in terms of Mitch's influence on the squad over the past 12 months. Both Mitch and Lachlan have played a similar amount of NRL games, and have the experience to play first grade if required.

"We were looking for a squad member, and so with that I must stress that Lachlan isn't a replacement for Kurt Mann nor a replacement for Nene Macdonald."

Maranta's signing sees him among the likes of Korbin Sims, Mikaele Ravalawa, Eddie Blacker, Lachlan Timm and Jonus Pearson to have joined the Red V ahead of the 2019 season.

The re-signing of Sims follows the likes of Cameron McInnes, Zac Lomax, Jeremy Latimore, Luciano Leilua, Matt Dufty, Josh Kerr, Joe Lovodua and Jordan Pereira to have also extended their stay with the Dragons over the past 12 months.

Lachlan Maranta joins the Dragons in 2019


Acknowledgement of Country

St George Illawarra Dragons respect and honour the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders peoples, where our games are played, our programs are conducted and in the communities we support.

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