Shellharbour Sharks cash in on Ray

Towering Wests Tigers front-rower Ray Cashmere has agreed to terms with the Shellharbour Sharks and will return to the Illawarra Coal Cup next season.

While Cashmere has not signed with Shellharbour yet, club president Peter Blaine said the experienced prop was likely to be wearing the Sharks' colours next year.

Ray Cashmere

Ray Cashmere

Sharks recruitment manager Allan Carroll has been instrumental in negotiating with Cashmere.

Cashmere has played for Wests Magpies, FC Lezignan in France, Wests Tigers, North Queensland Cowboys, Salford City Reds in England, and captained the Illawarra Cutters in the NSW Cup this year before Tim Sheens threw him an NRL lifeline with Wests Tigers again mid-season.

Cashmere will play for Wests Tigers feeder club Balmain Ryde-Eastwood Tigers in their NSW Cup elimination final against Windsor Wolves at Belmore Sports Ground tomorrow.

"Cashmere's basically agreed to come and play with us. I watched a lot of his games in the Cutters' early rounds. He'll go all right in this [Illawarra Coal Cup] comp," Blaine said.

Ryan Powell has been reappointed Shellharbour head coach for the 2013 and 2014 seasons.

Cronulla prop and Shellharbour product Josh Cordoba may return to his junior club next season.

Cordoba played his junior football with Shellharbour and NSWRL junior reps with the Illawarra Steelers before playing in the NRL for Parramatta (2006-2009), Super League for Hull in England in 2009 and back in the NRL with Cronulla (2010-2012).

"Josh Cordoba's a local junior and he's looking to coming home and finishing his career with Shellharbour," Blaine said.

"Josh is a good kid. I remember him coming out of 16s ... and he played a fair bit of grade when he was 17-18. Josh has indicated that he's always wanted to finish his career down here. Unless he gets an NRL contract he'll certainly be with us.

"We've come to terms on a handshake but like any player that plays with us, if they can better themselves we don't stand in their way."

Cashmere and Cordoba would provide tremendous strength to the Sharks' cause, especially up front and particularly if captain and 2011 Paul McGregor Medal winner Jamie Dunning plays again after knee damage threatened his career.

"We look like we've got all our existing players to stay," Blaine said.

Shellharbour have made the finals series in first grade in all of their four seasons in the Illawarra league.


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