Flana­gan ready to blood his son in Sharks tri­als

The Weekend Australian - - SPORT - AAP

LEAGUE: Cronulla coach Shane Flana­gan will give his son Kyle a shot at an NRL halves spot dur­ing the up­com­ing tri­als and ex­pects to see him in first-grade this year.

Flana­gan re­vealed Kyle, 19, will play in the Sharks No 7 jersey in his side’s first pre-sea­son trial against Manly at South­ern Cross Group Sta­dium on Fe­bru­ary 17.

The Sharks coach has pre­vi­ously said he would have no hes­i­ta­tion pick­ing his son for first grade if he feels he’s up to it, and Kyle looks set to re­ceive his first taste in the com­ing months.

While Flana­gan said Chad Townsend and Matt Moy­lan were his first-pick half­back and five- eighth for 2018, he was giv­ing his son ev­ery chance to push for a start­ing spot.

“He’ll get his chance in the trial, he’ll play half­back with prob­a­bly Matty Moy­lan in our first trial against Manly,” Flana­gan told Sky Sports Ra­dio.

“My halves, I’ve pen­cilled in Chad Townsend and Matty Moy­lan. But dur­ing the Ori­gin pe­riod, form and in­jury, he’ll get his chance at some stage dur­ing the year.

“It might be as early as round six or seven, around that Ori­gin pe­riod, (round) eight.

“He’s trained re­ally well, he’s put on a bit of size and it’ll be ex­cit­ing times if he does make his de­but this year.”

Kyle was a sen­sa­tion for the Sharks un­der-20s side last year, break­ing the Na­tional Youth Com­pe­ti­tion pointscor­ing record af­ter rack­ing up 360 points in 26 games.

Hav­ing last year booted 140 con­ver­sions at an 80 per cent suc­cess rate, he shapes as a po­ten­tial an­swer to their goal kick­ing dilemma fol­low­ing the de­par­ture of James Maloney.

He will this week­end train un­der the watch­ful eye of new NSW coach Brad Fit­tler as part of the Blues Emerg­ing Squad along­side some of the game’s hottest young tal­ent in­clud­ing team­mate Jay­den Brai­ley, South Syd­ney’s An­gus Crich­ton, Pen­rith’s Nathan Cleary and Can­berra’s Nick Cotric.

Fit­tler takes over from Lau­rie Da­ley who was sacked af­ter only win­ning one se­ries in­his five years at the helm.

Kyle Flana­gan

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