Fijian youngster Caleb Navale has signed a three-year contract extension with the Manly Sea Eagles.
The new deal locks Navale into the club until at least the end of the 2026 NRL season.
The 20-year-old lock forward made his debut for Fiji Bati at the Pacific Championships in October and played all three Tests and now has his long-term future secured.
Navale is also a product of the Manly pathways system, having won the club’s best and fairest for the Jersey Flegg competition in 2023 where he also captained the junior side.
Prior to his move to the club, he played with the St George Illawarra Dragons up until the end of 2021.
While he is still eligible for Jersey Flegg in 2024, he will likely progress to be a fulltime member of the NSW Cup side in the coming 12 months, with an NRL debut also potentially on the horizon pending injuries, form and the performance of the first-grade side, as well as Navale’s own performances in the reserve grade competition.
Sea Eagles coach Anthony Seibold, who himself is preparing for his second season on the Northern Beaches, said Navale had impressed him during 2023.
“Caleb showed his real potential at the Pacific Championships. He has been spending time training with the NRL squad this pre-season and will spend more during the season,” Seibold said in a club statement.
“We want to help Caleb achieve his potential. We want to see him compete for a spot in our NSW Cup team this season.”
Navale will likely feature for Manly in the club’s two pre-season challenge matches against the Sydney Roosters on 17 February in Gosford, and against the Brisbane Broncos at Brookvale on 24 February, before kicking off his NSW Cup season with the Blacktown Workers Sea Eagles against the South Sydney Rabbitohs on 9 March.