Sharks add to forward strength

In a boost to the forward depth at the Sharks, experienced forwards Siosaia Vave and Tinirau Arona, both having recently returned from World Cup duties, have joined the club for the 2014 NRL season.


Vave, who played for the Melbourne Storm over the past two years but also made a major contribution to the Sharks success in the NSW Cup competition victory in 2013, returns to the Shire after previously playing for the Sharks in 2010-2011.


Arona joins the Sharks from the Sydney Roosters where he played a role for the club during their premiership winning season last year.


The pair are both just 24 years of age, coincidently born just a week apart in May 1995. They have signed on for the 2014 season at the Sharks.


Both players represented at the recent Rugby League World Cup, Vave for Tonga and Arona for the Cook Islands.


Since debuting in the NRL while playing for the Sharks back in 2010 Vave has since turned out in 40 NRL games for both the Sharks and Storm, while Arona, who played his first top grade game in 2011, has made 36 NRL appearances, all coming for the Sydney Roosters.


Arona and Vave complement likes of Paul Gallen, Luke Lewis, Andrew Fifita, Wade Graham, Sam Tagataese, Chris Heighington, Anthony Tupou, Bryce Gibbs, David Fifita, Matt Prior, Tupou Sopoaga and Tim Robinson, with the competition for positions in the Sharks forward pack set to be intense.


Sharks coach Shane Flanagan was happy to be welcoming the experienced duo to the club for next season.


Weve got some real depth is some key areas for next year and Arona and Vave certainly add to that, Flanagan said. Both have experience, having played somewhere near 40 NRL games and I would hope they will be pushing for places in our top 17 come the start of the season next year.


Both players commenced pre-season training with the Sharks this week after being given time off following their World Cup campaigns.


Pre-season training continues for the Sharks, with Kangaroo representatives Gallen and Fifita, the only ones missing as they take an extended break and are due to return after the Christmas break.