Toby Rudolf of the Sharks passes the ball during the Cronulla Sharks NRL training session at UWA Sports Park on February 13, 2020 in Perth, Australia. (Feb. 12, 2020 - Source: Getty Images AsiaPac)

The Canterbury Bulldogs are causing headaches for the coaching staff at the Cronulla Sharks after throwing their hat in the ring to obtain star forward Toby Rudolf.

The Bulldogs are chasing a players to fill a middle forward role and have identified the likes of Rudolf as well as Melbourne Storm’s Brandon Smith as someone to fill their void.

It is understood Canterbury have not made any formal offers to Rudolf as of yet but are keeping a close eye on the 25-year-old.

Rudolf has had a prolific start to the 2021 season, running an average of 125 metres per game and laying an average of 31 tackles in each of his six outings this season.

Incoming Sharks senior coach Craig Fitzgibbon is left with the task of retaining Rudolf, along with 14 other Sharks players who are out-of-contract at the end of this year.

Following Sharks premiership half back Chad Townsend announcing he is on his way to the North Queensland Cowboys for season 2022, retaining Rudolf has been labelled a ‘priority’, perĀ The Daily Telegraph.

Fitzgibbon recently signed a 3-year deal with the Sharks commencing in 2022, but he will continue to fulfill his current roles with the Roosters and the New South Wales State of Origin team as an assistant coach for the remainder of this season.

Further, the Bulldogs will free up a large sum of money at the end of this season, with 16 players on their list out of contract at the end of this season.

The Bulldogs have already strengthened their list for 2022, with the inclusions of Melbourne Storm winger Josh Addo-Carr and Penrith Panthers halfback Matt Burton.

Melbourne Storm Training Session
SUNSHINE COAST, AUSTRALIA – SEPTEMBER 29: Josh Addo-Carr looks to pass during a Melbourne Storm NRL training session at Sunshine Coast Stadium on September 29, 2020 in Sunshine Coast, Australia. (Photo by Bradley Kanaris/Getty Images)

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