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Griffin to let Dragons youngsters “duke it out” for starting fullback role


St George Illawarra coach Anthony Griffin is mulling his options when it comes to selecting his starting fullback for the 2022 season.

With Matt Dufty leaving the club for the Bulldogs, the number one jersey is up for grabs and the Dragons have two young guns – Tyrell Sloan and Cody Ramsey – that can play the position.

While both have impressed in their fledgling careers, Griffin says he hasn’t sided with one yet allowing them to “duke it out” in the pre-season.

“We’re just giving them (Sloan and Ramsey) both every opportunity,” Griffin said on Sportsday.

“We’ve taken a real hands on approach with them, the assistant coaches are working really closely with them.

“We’ve sort of fast-tracked them, they’re both early in their careers bearing in mind we also have Moses Mbye that can play fullback as well.

“Those three guys are sharing the reps now, but those two guys are obviously our future – Ramsey and Sloan.

“They’re different types of players but they’re exceptional talents, so we’ll let them duke it out.”

While one of the two will eventually be handed the one jersey, Griffin says that won’t be their only chance to get into the starting 13 due to their versatility.

“Both of them can play wing as well,” Griffin said.

“They’ve put a bit of size on, they’re a lot more physical and they’re both up around 90kg now, they both played last year in the low to mid 80s.”

The Dragons will be hoping to significantly improve in 2022 after finishing in 11th place with just eight wins from 24 games last season.

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