Dragons Hoping Stars Will Stay

St George Illawarra coach Nathan Brown is "reasonably confident" the club can retain star players Shaun Timmins and Mark Gasnier.

George Mimis, who manages the pair, was set to re-open negotiations over dinner with Dragons chief executive Peter Doust after returning from an overseas business trip.

A final decision on their future was unlikely to be made until next week.

"I'd be reasonably confident that we'd get them both," Brown said.

"You can never be 100 per cent sure until they sign because obviously they're quality players who have attracted a lot of interest.

"At the end of the day there's only so many dollars to hand out and I'm sure some clubs are going to be bidding hard for them.

"I'd think they stay with us for a bit less. I'd be surprised if we lost them but you can't begrudge a player for taking a quid."

It was reported in the Daily Telegraph that the Dragons were prepared to table offers worth $1.4 million for centre Gasnier and NSW Origin five-eighth Timmins.

English glamour club Wigan has made a huge offer to Gasnier while Timmins, who trained with the Blues in the NSW coastal town of Forster, is being chased by cashed-up Cronulla.

"I don't think Gaz is going to go to England and I wouldn't imagine Timmo going because he enjoys playing for NSW and Australia," said Brown.

"He's missed a few years of playing for Australia when he was at his peak so every game he gets now"

Timmins is likely to remain loyal to the club which stuck by him when he missed nearly two years of football because of a degenerative bone disease in his knees.

"Hopefully something can happen soon, I'd love to stay at the club and hopefully I'll be there for another couple of years," Timmins said.

Brown believes Timmins is a shoe-in for the Test match against New Zealand on July 25 - either at lock, five-eighth or centre.

"Going on the games he's played for the Dragons and for NSW ... I'd be surprised if he wasn't there," said the former St George hooker.

"I know Opes (Test coach Chris Anderson) likes him as a player."

Brown revealed the Dragons are interested in recruiting Bulldogs forwards Roy Asotasi and Corey Payne and Manly prop Nathan Long for 2004.