Manly grant veteran NRL forward a release

Pamela Whaley
Manly's Joel Thompson is set to leave Manly for St Helens in the Super League

This NRL season will be Joel Thompson's last with Manly after the popular forward was granted a release to join St Helens next year.

The 31-year-old was contracted to the Sea Eagles until the end of 2021 but requested a release to chase a multi-year deal in the Super League.

Thompson joined Manly in 2018 and has since gone on to become one of their most reliable players across 51 NRL games for the club, missing just four games.

And despite his extensive experience in the NRL, he is best known for his community work and leadership in the Indigenous rugby league community.

Earlier this season he was named captain of the Indigenous All Stars.

His signing is a coup for the Super League champions who have recently lost star prop Luke Thompson to Canterbury, who is required to undergo mandatory isolation before he begins training with the Bulldogs.