England half-back Rangi Chase has handed in a transfer request at Castleford, the Super League club have confirmed.
The 2011 Man of Steel's future has been the source of intense speculation for more than a year but he now appears to have taken a decisive step towards the Wheldon Road exit.
A statement from the West Yorkshire club read: "Castleford Tigers can confirm that Rangi Chase has submitted a transfer request."
Castleford did not indicate whether or not Chase's request would be granted but the development is a boost to suitors Salford.
The Reds, and their ambitious owner Marwan Koukash, have already failed with two bids for the 27-year-old New Zealand-born playmaker, who joined from St George Illawarra in 2009.
His breakthrough season came in 2011 when he was named the Super League's best player, as well as also winning international honours with England, despite having previously played for the New Zealand Maori.
Last season a move to Hull fell through over visa complications, while a mooted return to St George in April also failed to materialise.