The Cronulla Sharks begin their path of emulating their 2015 success this weekend when the 2016 NSWRL Junior Representative season kicks off.
Not only did the Sharks take out the Harold Matthews and SG Ball Premierships last year, but they also won both State Championships over the winners of the Queensland Junior Representative competitions.
Kyle Flanagan – son of Sharks NRL head coach Shane Flanagan – played a pivotal role in capturing the SG Ball title last season, and has been appointed captain of the side for the year ahead.
“ was a good experience,” Flanagan told NSWRL.com.au.
“I learnt a lot from the older boys who [taught] me a lot of things. It’s the same coaching staff and trainers, and with the Harold Matt’s coming up we’ve got a good group of boys.
“Hopefully we can do the same again this year.”
The Sharks SG Ball team begin proceedings in Perth this weekend as they take on the West Coast Pirates at Curtin University.
The Harold Matthews team, led by Kai Broadhurst, only have to travel to Kirkham Oval to take on the South West Sydney Academy of Sport team.
Flanagan admits the pre-season has been long, and cannot wait to rip in this weekend for the first time since capturing the State Championship over Townsville.
“The trial games always get you excited for [the season] and we’ve got some good boys coming through, so [I’m] looking forward to Round 1 in Perth,” Flanagan said.
Nine rounds of Rugby League showcased by possible future NRL superstars will be played out until the finals series begin on 16 April.
The Grand Finals will be played on 7 May while the winners of the respective competitions will battle it out with their Queensland counterparts for the State Championship on 14 May.