It is a problem most NRL coaches would love to have.
Who would you play at fullback – Valentine Holmes or Jack Bird?
Cronulla head into their local derby with bitter rivals St George Illawarra on Sunday with a selection headache for coach Shane Flanagan on the back of the Sharks’ comprehensive thrashing of Canberra last weekend.
Holmes was expected to replace premiership-winning fullback Ben Barba in the No.1 jersey after Barba was released by the club during pre-season. But Holmes has missed the opening two rounds with a hamstring problem, opening the door firstly for Gerard Beale, only for the New Zealand international to also suffer a hamstring injury.
That gave Bird a chance at fullback against the Raiders on Saturday night, an opportunity he took with both hands.
The 21-year-old was outstanding against Canberra to leave Flanagan with a big decision ahead of the clash with the Dragons at Southern Cross Group Stadium.
“Val will be available [against the Dragons],” Flanagan said.
“That’s probably about it, I would think. Gerard Beale will probably be [out for] another week or two.
“Val will be back. So some selection issues after a win is always a good problem to have.”
Some selection issues after a win is always a good problem to have.Sharks coach Shane Flanagan
Cronulla captain Paul Gallen understands as well as anyone the history – and rivalry – between the Sharks and Dragons and said he was looking forward to the clash as much as ever.
“We’ve got a big game [this] week,” he said.
“It’s going to be a really, really good crowd down at Southern Cross Group Stadium.
“[I’m] really looking forward to that one, a local derby. The form goes out the window and comes down to a pretty tough game.”
Kick-off is at 6.30pm.