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Hannay confirmed as Sharks assistant

He had a brief association with the Sharks in 2007 and a long-playing career at the Cowboys, one which included 150 NRL games, with Josh Hannay confirmed as an NRL Assistant coach at the Cronulla club in 2021.

The 2020 North Queensland Cowboys interim Head Coach after the mid-season departure of Paul Green, while also a Queensland Origin assistant under Kevin Walters in 2018, Hannay brings a wealth of experience to the Sharks in complementing John Morris’s coaching team.

“I’m really looking forward to the opportunity of working with John and the rest of the staff,” Hannay said. “The playing roster is a very exciting one with some great established players and some exciting young talent coming through.

“In my first conversation with John I spoke of how I’ve admired from afar the way Cronulla have played for a number of years and the fact that in my opinion, the Sharks are one of the few clubs in the competition that has a distinguishable identity with how they play.

“I can’t wait to get started,” he added.

Sharks coach John Morris was also pleased to have someone with extensive experience, both in the coaches box and on the playing field, to be joining his staff and high performance set up for 2021.

“I am very pleased to add Josh Hannay to our 2021 coaching staff,” Morris said. “Josh not only brings a wealth of experience as a former Queensland State of Origin player but also comes very respected across the game as a coach.

“I thought Josh handled the Interim head coach job with class at the Cowboys and admired the way they competed under his coaching. No doubt he will impart those same qualities on our team.

“Being a centre himself, I am also looking forward to Josh bringing out the best in our promising outside backs in Mulitalo, Katoa, Ramien and Kennedy,” Morris added.

Following a successful playing career, one which included two Origin matches for Queensland and a stint in the UK with the Celtic Crusaders, to go along with his 153 NRL appearances, Hannay turned his hand to coaching.

Returning to Moranbah in North Queensland, Hannay led his hometown club to a premiership as captain-coach in 2012, then accepted a position as head coach of Queensland Cup team the Souths Logan Magpies in 2014 where he would be in charge for 70 games and three seasons.

Hannay was also coach of the of the Queensland under-18 side for their interstate matches against NSW in 2016 and 2017, the year he returned to the Cowboys as an assistant to Green, helping the North Queensland team to qualify for the Grand Final in his first season on the club’s coaching staff.

He was also the defensive coach with the Queensland Origin team in 2018, spending one year in the role, then more recently following a tumultuous season at the Cowboys in 2020, Hannay took the reins as the interim head coach after the resignation of Green mid-year.

Hannay will arrive in the Shire and at the Sharks during the second week of their pre-season campaign where he joins head coach Morris and returning NRL Assistant Dave Howlett on the Sharks senior coaching staff.