NEWCASTLE, AUSTRALIA - MARCH 15: Connor Watson of the Newcastle Knights in action during round one NRL match between the Newcastle Knights and the Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks at McDonald Jones Stadium on March 15, 2019 in Newcastle, Australia. (Photo by Ashley Feder/Getty Images)

The Cronulla Sharks reportedly have Newcastle utility Connor Watson in their sights, with an opening spot in the halves potentially a luring factor for the 25-year-old, per Wide World of Sports' The Mole

Watson has started at lock, five-eighth and off the interchange in 2021, while also being run through at dummy-half and showing plenty of promise at the back under Knights coach Adam O'Brien

Having been used across the field and commonly relied on as the 14th man, Watson could be lured by the desire of a full-time starting role elsewhere.

Watson inked a new one-year deal in October last year, with another decision on his future now set for 2022 and beyond.

GOLD COAST, AUSTRALIA - MAY 19: Connor Watson of the Knights runs the ball during the round 11 NRL match between the Gold Coast Titans and the Newcastle Knights at Cbus Super Stadium on May 19, 2018 in Gold Coast, Australia. (Photo by Chris Hyde/Getty Images)

The Central Coast product has played 56 games for the Novocastrians since defecting from the Roosters at the end of the 2017 season.

It is understood that Watson has a strong relationship with incoming Sharks coach Craig Fitzgibbon during their time together in Bondi, with the impending Cronulla man potentially looking to lure the flexible Knight as a third signing for next season.

Fitzgibbon has already secured the services of Melbourne Storm star Nicho Hynes for next season, while injured Dragons playmaker Cameron McInnes will also venture to the Shire at season's end.

Hynes is sure to lock up one of the two open halves positions under Fitzgibbon, with his pending partner potentially seen as Watson.

The Sharks will offload Shaun Johnson at the end of 2021, while Matt Moylan's future is no clearer at this stage.

Cronulla will also cut ties with Chad Townsend as part of his impending move to Townsville from 2022.

SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - MARCH 14: Chad Townsend of the Sharks passes during the round one NRL match between the St George Illawarra Dragons and the Cronulla Sharks at Netstrata Jubilee Stadium, on March 14, 2021, in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Matt King/Getty Images)

The Mole also reports that Townsend could be preparing to pack his bags and head to North Queensland sooner than first agreed, with the veteran halfback not having feature for Cronulla since Round 11.

Townsend was the match-winner in that 13-12 win over the Dragons, but his favouritism under interim coach Josh Hannay looks to have faded.