Young Sharks outside back Mawene Hiroti will be back in Sharks colours in 2022 after signing a one-year contact extension.
Currently in his second season at the Sharks, the 22-year-old New Zealand-born Hiroti’s signing will add to the depth of Cronulla's backline next year.
Selected on the wing for the Sharks crucial round 25 clash with the Storm this weekend, Hiroti was pleased to have his immediate future sorted, while firstly focusing his attention on Friday’s match.
“I'm really happy to be at the Sharks again next year and to have my contract sorted ahead of such a big match this week,” Hiroti said.
“I’ve enjoyed working with Josh Hannay and the coaching staff this year but it is exciting to have the opportunity to learn from Craig Fitzgibbon and his assistant coaches next season to improve my game even further.
“We have a lot of really good young players here at the Sharks, plenty of experience in the squad as well and with the new signings there is a lot to look forward to next year,’” he added.
Current Sharks coach Josh Hannay was of the belief the signing was a good one for Hiroti and for the Cronulla club.
“Mawene is a very under-rated player and is someone who has stepped up for us in a big way at different times this year,” Hannay said.
“While his year has been interrupted by injury, whenever he has put the Sharks jersey on he has shown he is more then capable at the NRL level and I’m really happy for both him and the club that they could come to terms.
“Mawene’s signature adds yet another quality piece to our squad for 2022,” Hannay added.
Arriving from Souths in 2020, the former Junior Kiwi debuted against the Dragons in round five and played just two games in the top grade last year.
However in becoming a regular member of the Sharks squad this season, Hiroti has so far made 13 NRL appearances, playing both centre and wing in 2021 and will run out in the number five jersey to face the Storm on Friday night.