Blacklock Creates A Dragon

St George Illawarra looks certain to re-sign centre Mark Gasnier and five-eighth Shaun Timmins by the end of next week, but the National Rugby League club now finds itself under increasing pressure to retain try-scoring winger Nathan Blacklock.

Blacklock has upped the ante in his bid to secure a contract, with his manager Shaun Martyn admitting the former Test winger was likely to make a decision on his future by Monday.

Martyn revealed Blacklock had received a lucrative offer from a rival Sydney club, believed to be the Wests Tigers, and wanted to end speculation.

The Dragons had put talks with Blacklock on the backburner until they secured priority signings Gasnier and Timmins.

Those players are certain to sign but Blacklock could be the sacrificial lamb as the Dragons fight the constraints of the salary cap.

Blacklock's stance comes 24 hours after Wigan chairman Maurice Lindsay released a statement announcing the English club was dropping off Gasnier.

Lindsay said the Warriors had withdrawn their offer following "wildly exaggerated" reports the English Super League club was willing to pay as much as $A900,000 a year.

"Perhaps suggesting that Wigan were prepared to pay a high sum helped to improve negotiations in Australia," he said.

"We will not be part of that game. It is not the first time that we have been mentioned in this way by a particular agent in Australia."