Cronulla halfback Chad Townsend is reportedly on the brink of signing a shock deal with a rival club.

Cronulla halfback Chad Townsend is reportedly on the brink of signing a shock deal with the North Queensland Cowboys.

The Sydney Morning Herald reports that sources in Townsville have confirmed the deal will be announced in the coming days.

Townsend is expected to sign on for three years in the hopes he will partner Broncos young gun Tom Dearden in the halves should North Queensland bag the youngster.

Chad Townsend. (Getty)

The halfback currently has until round 13 to activate an option in his favour for 2022, while the Sharks have an option in their favour for 2023.

The move would likely end the Cowboys’ hunt for Souths halfback Adam Reynolds, who is believed to be eager to remain in Sydney should he walk from his long-time club.

North Queensland intends to sign Townsend with the money saved through the medical retirement of Michael Morgan.

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