In what was his first year in the NRL in 2010, boom Sharks fullback Nathan Gardner has given Sharks fans the perfect Christmas present, re-signing with the club until the end of the 2013 season.

John Frare, Gardner’s manager was keen for both his client, and the Sharks to get the deal sorted, and put pen to paper before the New Year came around.

“It’s exactly what I wanted,” Gardner said.

“I didn’t want to start the season off contract so it’s good to know I’ll be here for at least another three years.

“I couldn’t be happier with the club, everyone has been amazing and I love playing for the Sharks.”

Gardner finished as the Sharks highest try-scorer for the season in 2010 including a breathtaking solo effort against the Roosters that was unlucky not to win try of the year.

“2010 was obviously a massive year for myself in so many ways.”

“I joined the club at the start of the season and was just hoping to get one game under my belt, but I ended up playing sixteen straight and couldn’t have asked for anymore.”

“My big test now is to really cement the fullback spot and make it my own and to do that I need to keep improving my game and playing consistent footy.”

In Gardner’s view, having experienced representative players such as Jeremy Smith and Paul Gallen in their team was a bonus for the Sharks as they look to have a better season in 2011.

“Having such experienced and competitive players in the side gives you so much more confidence.”

“I’m so excited for the 2011 season to kick off and knowing that we have a solid team with a great coach puts no doubt in my mind that we will be successful.”

“The Sharks are only on the up and I’m very happy being a part of it.”

Sharks coach Shane Flanagan is also over the moon that Gardner has re-signed with the Sharks, describing him as an integral part of the team

“It’s great news for the Sharks and I’d like to think Nathan will be our fullback for the next five to ten years,” Flanagan said.

“I look back at some of the successful Sharks era’s and they’ve all had a quality fullback like Peachey and Docking.

“I had doubts about his size early on, but I’m confident Nathan can be that player and really stamp his authority on the game.

“He had a brilliant first season, scoring two length of the field tries and he has certainly taken some steps during the pre season to ensure 2011 will be just as good, if not better.”

By ricky

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