Puletua would have retired

Gold Coast coach John Cartwright says New Zealand Test forward Frank Puletua would've retired from the NRL if the Titans hadn't granted him a release on compassionate grounds.

The Titans today agreed to let Puletua stay with Penrith for personal reasons, but they aren't backing down from their battle for Melbourne winger Steve Turner to honour his three-year agreement with the new club.

Cartwright says he's known about Puletua's personal problems for a long time and had no choice but to grant the 27-year-old a release. The coach says Turner's case is different, although he's steering clear of the bitter contractual dispute between the Titans and Melbourne.