The Cronulla Sharks have selected a talented youngster to start this weekend’s derby with St George Illawarra following a long-term injury to fullback Will Kennedy.
Though it was originally believed young half Lachlan Miller would be given the nod to replace Kennedy, The Daily Telegraph has revealed that Kade Dykes will be handed his club debut in the No.1.
If you’re wondering why that name sounds familiar, Kade is the son of Sharks legend Adam Dykes – who also made his debut as a youngster and will be in attendance this week for the club’s Old Boys Day.
Kade is also the grandson of former Sharks back-rower John Dykes, making him the third generation from one family to play for the Shire club.
Dykes’ selection comes on the back of string of electric performances for feeder club Newtown in the NSW Cup. Dykes has played 13 cup games for the Jets since making his debut in April.
In 13 appearances he’s already scored eight tries and directly assisted nine more, and he currently averages five tackle-breaks and 130 running metres per game.
He’s crossed the line in each of his last three NSW Cup games, and is in a vein of form that has proven too hard for coach Craig Fitzgibbon to ignore.
The loss of Kennedy comes as another big blow to the Sharks, who had lost prolific winger Sione Katoa to a season-ending injury just a week before.
Luckily, the Shire-club have incredible depth in a number of positions at the moment, thanks to a strong junior system and the current form of the ladder-leading Jets.
That must be gut-wrenching for Miller. He’s behind Braydon Trindall in the Sharks’ reserve spine, and now he’s behind Dykes as the reserve full back. In his one first team performance, last month, he was brilliant.
If I were Mr Miller, I’d be asking for a release at the end of the year. There are plenty of clubs who will pay good money for a guy with his ability. He’s 27 going on 28, so if he doesn’t get a break next year he will probably be considered to be too old to establish himself in the NRL.
Ask Lachie – you have nothing to lose !
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