Cronulla hooker Michael Ennis says he hopes Michael Gordon hasn’t walked out on the NRL club because the fullback is “so valuable” to the team.
The Sharks on Tuesday dismissed a report that Gordon failed to show at Sharks training after he was refused a release to join Parramatta.
According to News Corp, he reportedly did so after taking advice from the NRL Rugby League Players Association.
The 31-year-old had been set to switch camps last week on a long-term deal, however Cronulla’s board scuppered the move at the 11th hour as they intend to keep Gordon until his contract finishes at the end of the season.
Ennis said he asked coach Shane Flanagan about the situation as soon as he heard the report, only to be told it wasn’t true.
“Obviously hearing that he quit the club or what have you I then asked Shane, and he said, `Our position hasn’t changed’,” Ennis told Fox Sports’ NRL 360 show.
“As a board they denied that release opportunity and he’s still at the club.”
Cronulla said in a statement on Tuesday that Gordon was given leave from training “in order to address some personal matters”.
“His non-attendance at training, which was an informal team activity at a nearby indoor sports centre, was not unexpected by the Cronulla club and coaching staff,” the statement said.
“Discussions with Michael this afternoon have confirmed that he is embarrassed by reports currently circulating that he has walked out on his contract at our club,” group CEO, Lyall Gorman added.
Ennis said he and the rest of the team were really keen for Gordon to play out the remainder of the season with the Sharks.
“We all love playing with him, he’s such a great player,” he said.
“At fullback, wing, wherever he is on the team, he’s so valuable to us.”
The Sharks said they expected Gordon to be back in full training early next week.