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Cronulla confirm Cherrington signing

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 12/08/2016

Cronulla have found their heir apparent to Michael Ennis, signing young Wests Tigers dummy-half Manaia Cherrington.

After weeks of rumours linking the 21-year-old to the NRL club, the Sharks confirmed the New Zealander had signed a one-year deal for 2017 on Friday.

"The boys here at the Sharks are going really well, it's exciting times and I cant wait to be a part of it," Cherrington said.

Cherrington's move to the Shire will also have major consequences for the Tigers, whose once burgeoning hooking stocks are suddenly looking thin.

NSW rake Robbie Farah has been dumped to NSW Cup and is expected to sign a two-year deal with South Sydney in the near future.

Dene Halatau, who has worn the No.9 since Farah's axing, has announced he will retire at the conclusion of this season while it remains to be seen if Matt Ballin, who will be 33 in January, will ever play again after undergoing two knee reconstructions in two years.

The club had hoped to use the back half of the season to give game time to highly-rated 19-year-old Jacob Liddle, however that plan was scuppered because of second tier salary cap restraints.

Renowned as a dynamic player out of dummy-half, Cherrington made his debut for the Tigers last season in round 13.

He was picked in New Zealand's train-on squad for last year's tour of England and started the 2016 season off the Tigers' bench, however he was dropped back to NSW Cup after five rounds.

Cronulla used Matt McIlwrick in Ennis' absence last weekend, but he is off-contract at the end of this season.

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