Wales ace Leigh Halfpenny could command record deal
A WORLD-RECORD rugby contract could be needed to prise Leigh Halfpenny away from Welsh rugby.
The biggest deal in union history is still believed to be the one Dan Carter signed for Perpignan in 2008, costing the French club a reported £600,000 for an arrangement that covered seven months.
But informed sources have told the Evening Post that if Halfpenny is to be lured to the Top 14 from the Blues next season it could take an even bigger package to snare him.
Halfpenny's representatives have held preliminary talks with the Cardiff region about whether they can stitch together a package to keep a player who this summer has been described as the best in the world.
But if it comes to a straight bidding war the Blues have virtually no chance of winning.
As yet, there haven't been any discussions with other parties interested in tempting the Gorseinon product away from the Arms Park.
Average salaries are predicted to fall in the Top 14 this season for the first time since the league went professional in 1997, but that will not be the cue for any club to land the Lions man of the series on the cheap as he comes out of contract at the Blues at the end of the campaign.
His stock has never been higher, and those close to the Welshman are determined to not to undervalue him.
Jonny Wilkinson is reportedly the biggest earner in the Top 14, on 56,000 euros (£48,155) a month. But at 24 and close to being at the peak of his powers, Halfpenny will be priced higher again, with his advisers determined to ensure that if the likes of Toulon and Racing Metro want to secure his services, they will have to pay for the privilege.