Flanagan rules out Mason for Cronulla - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Flanagan rules out Mason for Cronulla

Russell Jackson 11/05/2011 07:22:22 PM Comments (0)

Cronulla coach Shane Flanagan admits he's got some front row targets in mind to replace NRL star Kade Snowden but Willie Mason isn't one of them.

Australian prop Snowden signed a four-year deal on Tuesday believed to be worth around $1.6 million to join Newcastle next season and it was reported the UK-based Mason was on the struggling Sharks' radar.

"I can guarantee you that we haven't spoken to Willie or his management at all, so it's really strange," Flanagan said.

"A club like ours where we are at present, any players looking for clubs are always going to be linked with us.

"We have got some targets out there but I've learned a lesson with the Kade Snowden affair and that is until I get their signature on a piece of paper I won't be announcing anything."

Snowden pulled out of a press conference to announce his re-signing with the Sharks back in February after a late call from Knights owner Nathan Tinkler before he had assumed control of the club.

"The Kade Snowden issue was a one in a million thing," Flanagan said.

"In the off-season our intentions were to sign Kade and we were probably a week or two off but that was no fault of the club.

"We tried to sign him before the pre-season started and we had no idea that Nathan Tinkler was going to take over the Newcastle Knights.

"We're disappointed to lose him ... terribly disappointed but there's nothing I can do about it and nothing the club can do about it.

Kiwi international Adam Blair is among the highest profile forwards off-contract at the end of the season and is almost certain to leave Melbourne.

He may be tempted by a reunion with grand final winning team-mate Jeremy Smith at the Sharks as well as the salary cap money freed up by the departures of Snowden and Luke Douglas (Gold Coast).

Flanagan is trying to focus on the Sharks' clash with the Sydney Roosters at Toyota Park on Sunday.

But he's been side-tracked by another issue surrounding Cronulla after former Brisbane Broncos and St George star and now commentator Gordon Tallis said the Sharks should relocate to Perth.

"Long-term the club has got a plan and they're working to it but it will take a couple of years," Flanagan said.

"We've got a great facility here, the players are really well looked after, they've got a great environment.

"We're doing a lot better than other clubs, we've got our own physio, our own doctors, compared to some other joints we're doing OK.

"The players love playing here, we haven't got the wins but we're working hard to get them.

"I reckon Gordon should just worry about his Fox Sports stuff.

"If the league's got expansion aspirations that's great but I'm sure it won't be the Cronulla Sharks moving."

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