The world of Rugby League.

rleague.com

Flanagan calls for Sharks focus

Cronulla coach Shane Flanagan has ordered his players to focus only on beating Parramatta and ignore the controversy surrounding Saturday's NRL game at Parramatta Stadium.
Flanagan calls for Sharks focus
by AAP

By Ian McCullough

SYDNEY, April 5 AAP - Cronulla coach Shane Flanagan has ordered his players to focus only on beating Parramatta and ignore the controversy surrounding Saturday's NRL game at Parramatta Stadium.

The Sharks' world was turned upside after they were caught up in the investigation into the use of prohibited substances by the Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority (ASADA) in February.

Flanagan was re-instated by the Sharks last month after being stood down by the club who axed four members of his backroom staff on the eve of the NRL season.

The Sharks have been implicated due to their connection with controversial sports scientist Stephen Dank, who worked briefly with the club in 2011.

Dank was introduced to the Sharks by former conditioner Trent Elkin who was interviewed by ASADA officials last month.

Elkin has since moved to Parramatta and will come face to face with several Sharks players who he worked with and are facing potential bans related to the alleged use of peptides.

Flanagan refused to discuss the investigation or Elkin, but said he side needed to improve out of sight from last Saturday's loss to St George Illawarra against the Eels.

"Everything that can be said has been said," Flanagan said about the probe.

"We have not talked about anything else this week apart from the game and how we must improve and get back on track."

The Eels were flogged 50-0 by the Sydney Roosters on Monday but Flanagan denied it is a good time to play Ricky Stuart's side.

"I think both sides will be extremely motivated to do well, and we haven't even discussed the Eels' last match," he said.

"Every team has an off-day and they had theirs. They are a proud club, with proud fans, players and coach."

The two teams will compete for the Jonny Mannah Cup, in memory of the young Eels prop, who also played for Cronulla, and lost his long battle with cancer in January.

"It's very touching that we get the chance to pay our respects to the special young man that Jon was," Flanagan said.

Flanagan has at his disposal the club's best roster in years and ordered some of his big-name signings to start performing.

"Some of our players' form has been a bit like the team, up and down.

"Luke Lewis has taken a bit of time to hit his straps but he's not the only one.

"It's hard when you come to a new club, you need to learn about new teammates and the way the team plays.

"But he'll get there."

Parramatta has endured a week to forget following last Monday's defeat by the Roosters but co-captain Jarryd Hayne said the players will be motivated by the memory of Mannah.

"It's good that we get the chance to celebrate the life of a very brave man," Hayne said.

"Before the game it will be emotional but playing a class side like Cronulla it's going to be tough.

"They are a top-four team and their pack is a good as anyone's."




Your thoughts?


You need to login or register to contribute here



Follow rleague.com on Facebook

Related Profiles

View profile pages including statistics, results, news, photos and more on all of the following...
FootyTeams
Cronulla Sharks

Popular News Stories