Sharks rocked by young gun's brain cancer diagnosis
THE Cronulla Sharks have been rocked by the devastating news that one of their brightest young stars is suffering from brain cancer.
A member of the NRL club's system since he was 15, Fine Kula has been forced to announce his immediate retirement to commence intense chemotherapy at Liverpool Hospital.
The 21-year-old front-rower had been a part of the Sharks top-30 NRL squad for the upcoming season.
The gut-wrenching diagnosis emerged as a result of Kula complaining of headaches.
The shock news was broken to the entire Cronulla playing group by head coach John Morris at the conclusion of their three-day camp in Kiama on Friday.
In a message to fans, the Sharks announced on their website on Saturday morning that they are working with the Men of League Foundation to support Kula and his family.
Kula, who arrived at the Sharks from New Zealand six years ago and progressed with promise through the club's lower grades, took to Instagram to announce his crushing decision to retire.
"Been deleting this and redoing it but really don't know how to say it,'' Kula wrote.
"But I started playing the game of rugby league at 12 years old and I have loved the game ever since.
"It gave me the opportunity to up lift my family to Australia, been such a pleasure playing for the Sharks, made friends that I know will be friends for a long time, but due to medical reasons for now gonna have to hang up the boots.
"Hurts thinking about it, footy has been a lifestyle for me past seven years.
"But being around family and getting healthy is next task for me.
"Thanks everyone who has messaged me.''
Sharks winger Ronaldo Mulitalo is extremely close to Kula and has vowed to carry his teammate's name with him this season.
"This year's for you, and I will continue to carry your name along with me,'' Mulitalo wrote on Instagram.
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