The 2018 season was a new beginning for former Rabbitoh Aaron Gray.
Shifting to the Shire, Gray trained strongly through his first pre-season, before being handed a Sharks debut in round two against the Dragons.
Unfortunately, things didn’t go to plan, Gray and the Sharks were beaten by the Dragons and with the return of some senior players he was relegated to the Intrust Super Premiership and the Newtown and the following week.
Such was the good form and depth in the Sharks outside backs, coupled with the fact that Gray’s body let him down at crucial times with injury derailing his season, and the one game against St George was all he could manage in the top grade in 2018.
His form at the next level was good enough for Gray to be included in the NSW Resident’s team, a squad featuring the best players from the ISP competition, but still he couldn’t crack it for an NRL berth.
But with a new season comes opportunity and when considering the Sharks have lost Edrick Lee, Ricky Leutele and Jesse Ramien for 2019, Gray will be well and truly in the frame for an NRL recall at either centre or wing.
Before arriving at Cronulla, Gray was a fixture in the Souths backline, representing City Origin in 2016 where he scored four tries in the annual match against Country. Debuting in the NRL in 2015, Gray played 42 games in three seasons at Souths.
Pre-Christmas Gray had been firing in the Sharks summer training sessions, only to suffer a recent injury setback, one which will see him miss the opening trial against Manly before hopefully being available for the final pre-season hit out then if selected, for round one in Newcastle.
Personally, Gray would have been disappointed in the way 2018 played out but it is all in front of him in 2019, with his robust style sure to make him a fan favourite if he can become a regular in the NRL squad this year.
Gray dropped into the Sharks Media studios recently as we go ‘under the surface’ in continuing our series in getting to know your 2019 Sharks NRL squad.
Born – April 7, 1994, Sydney
Junior Club – Mascot Jets
Position – Centre/wing
Height – 181cm
Weight – 96kgs
NRL games – 43
Sharks NRL games – 1