Sharks sweating it out under the summer sun
There was no respite for the Sharks on Friday morning with the NRL group sweating it out under the summer sun with field training on the back fields at Remondis Stadium this morning.
The Sharks were afforded no favours by High Performance Coach Andrew Gray despite the warm weather, going through an arduous conditioning session following on from some earlier skills and ball work drills.
After a break to refuel the boys had a indoor defensive technique/contact session at the Sutherland PCYC. But that doesn’t finish their week, with the players to spend Saturday morning in the gym early tomorrow.
A bit of a rest up on Sunday, then it all starts again on Monday.
Young guns off to camp
A collection of the Sharks under 20’s squad go off to the NRL’s NYC Holden Cup Rookie Camp late today where they will spend the weekend listening and learning at a number of educational seminars.
In all 16 Sharks players joined 20’s players and staff from four other NRL clubs at Wollongong University, accompanied by Sharks NYC team manager and club Welfare Officer Damien White, along with 20’s coach James Shepherd.
Sharks Career Coach Rebecca Potter was also due to join the group, along with strength trainer Matt Jay and assistant 20’s coach Wade Humphreys.
Included amongst the areas covered in the Rookie Camp are responsible gambling and alcohol consumption, positive uses of social media, along with a series of other informative educational offerings.
The Camp runs tonight, all day tomorrow and a half a day on Sunday.
Trials taking shape
Some venues still need to be finalised however the Sharks have set some dates for their pre-season trials with matches scheduled against Manly and the Wests Tigers during February.
The Sharks will play the Sea Eagles away but at a yet to be determined venue on Saturday, February 7, before tackling the Tigers on February 21, with the Tigers matches presently scheduled at Campbelltown Stadium.
The weekend prior to the Manly trial the Sharks will take part in the NRL Auckland Nines from January 31 to Feb 2, with the Indigenous All Stars match sandwiched in between the two trial games on February 14.
The Sharks newest recruit Ben Barba has in the past been a popular participant in the All Stars game, and with some success, having taken out man of the match honours when the last game was staged back in 2013.
And if an NRL request for photos of Barba in his new Sharks gear for game promotional purposes is anything to go by, expect him to be a part of the 2015 All Stars. Pending his fitness after undergoing off-season surgery, Andrew Fifita is also a big chance of joining his new teammate Barba in the Indigenous line up.
And the junior Sharks on trial too
The Sharks under 16 Matthews Cup and under 18 SG Ball squads have been working hard over the summer months in preparation for the upcoming season with both groups having high expectations of successful 2015 campaigns.
The new season officially kicks off on February 14, with a full draw yet to be released, however the young Sharks, like their senior counterparts, will tackle a number of trial matches in the lead up to the competition proper.
For those who enjoy the junior rep rugby league of those just looking for an off-season footy fix, there is a trial prior to Christmas, with two more to follow in January and one final hit out in the first week of February.
The junior rep trial season begins with matches against South Sydney at Erskineville Oval on Friday, December 12, then after Christmas the boys resume with games at Remondis Stadium against the Balmain Tigers on Friday, January 23.
The third junior rep trial is on Saturday, January 31, with the boys playing Canberra, in Canberra, before they put the finishing touches on their preparations against Newcastle at Remondis Stadium on Saturday, February 7.
Stay tuned to the Sharks website for more junior rep information including kick off times.
A number of Sharks staff and players paid their respects to Mark ‘Red’ Hunt when they attended his funeral today at St Catherine’s Catholic Church at Gymea.
Red, a popular trainer and support to players from junior reps to NSW Cup level at the Sharks over a period of almost 10 years, passed away suddenly last weekend in tragic circumstances.
In attendance was current Sharks staff, past and present players, including a large contingent from the 2014 NYC squad and players from the 2013 premiership winning NSW Cup side of which he was a part of the training and support staff.
As a tribute Sharks players and staff both past and present, as well as players and representatives from the local Gymea Junior league club where he was for a time a trainer, formed a guard of honour at the conclusion of the funeral service.
The Sharks offer their sincere condolences to Mark’s wife Jocelyn, his two children and his extended family.