Shane Flanagan, the soon-to-be coach of St George Illawarra, has already made a significant decision regarding the team line up. Flanagan stated that Zac Lomax, considered one of the most promising centres in the game, is to be trialled as the distinguished team’s long-term fullback.
Lomax, 23, is highly regarded and has shown his mettle to be tested as a fullback on several occasions. Despite proving his proficiency, he has yet to definitively claim the coveted No.1 jersey.
However, upon Flanagan’s advent to the ‘Red V’, the scenario promises to alter considerably. Lomax is set to contest the position against Tyrell Sloan, a player with a 36-game career streak displaying both remarkable flashes of talent and inconsistent gameplay.
Cody Ramsey‘s future remains unknown. He was on track to commence the season as fullback, but was unable to perform due to an inflammatory bowel condition. There has been a growing push for Lomax to switch to a spine position, given that he is among the highest-paid players at the club.
Flanagan confirmed his decision in a recent statement: “He’s definitely going to get some reps there in the off-season,”. He further highlighted the importance of Lomax’s versatility stating that “It’s not a bad thing for him to be able to play both sides of the field, either way. He’s done it at left centre and right centre.”
Speculations were rife regarding Lomax’s future when former coach Anthony Griffin demoted the player for the first time ever. Rumours spread about Flanagan potentially allowing Lomax to explore other options, however, the premiership-winning coach was swift to quash such conjecture.
“I’ve seen him play, he is talented,” commended Flanagan, “He can do a lot of things, but he just hasn’t played that position for a long period of time. We’ll give him some reps and see how he adjusts to it.”
Flanagan is currently serving his last days as assistant to Anthony Seibold at Manly. Upon conclusion of the end-of-season reviews there, he is tasked with breathing new life into the Dragons, a team ranked second last in the just-concluded season.
In other developments, chances are high that Kyle Flanagan, Shane’s son and off-contract half-hooker from the Bulldogs, will join him at the joint venture outfit, with an official announcement potentially coming this week.
The Dragons‘ end-of-season event saw Blake Lawrie being crowned the 2023 recipient of the Dragons medal as the club’s player of the year, with almost full attendance from the top and lower-grade squads.