Melbourne Storm and Wests Tigers have reached a mutually beneficial agreement that will see a player from each club involved in loan deals for the remainder of the 2020 NRL season.
In a unique exchange arrangement believed to be the first of its type in the NRL, young Storm hooker Harry Grant will switch to the Tigers for this season, while outside back Paul Momirovski will move in the other direction, from Sydney to Melbourne.
Both players will revert to their original clubs for 2021.
Regarded as one of the best players in the Queensland Intrust Super Cup, Grant has played two NRL games for Melbourne and won Storm’s Feeder Club Player of the Year Award in 2019.
The 21-year-old, who has represented Queensland at schoolboys, under-18 and under-20 levels, recently extended his NRL contract with Storm until the end of the 2022 season.
Momirovski, who can fill the wing and centre roles, made his NRL debut for the Roosters in the 2018 preliminary final before switching to the Tigers in 2019.
He played 11 matches last season, scoring eight tries and kicking 21 goals, and was selected at centre in the Prime Minister’s XIII squad that defeated Fiji last September.
The highlight of the 23-year-old’s debut year with Wests was a 26-point haul against St George Illawarra in round 24 – the Tigers’ highest individual one-game points tally since 2005.
Storm General Manager – Football Frank Ponissi said the player exchange would help both clubs’ premiership campaigns in 2020, as well as fast-track the development of two quality young footballers.
"We are delighted to have Paul come to our club for this season, learn from our coaching staff and playing group, and challenge for a position in our first 13 in 2020," Ponissi said.
"And it will certainly benefit Harry’s development for him to have a good shot at regular NRL action for the Tigers this year.
"He is one of the best young hookers in the game who we see as a long-term player for Storm and look forward to having him rejoin us for 2021."
The two players will head to their new clubs this week and will be eligible for selection in their new colours from this weekend.