Paul Gallen has re-signed.
Paul Gallen has re-signed.

Gallen inks final contract of career

CRONULLA skipper Paul Gallen has put pen to paper on the contract which guarantees his NRL career will end with a record-breaking 19th consecutive season.

The Sharks skipper, who debuted in June, 2001, will become the first player in the game's history to rack up 19 straight seasons next year.

Currently sitting on 326 all-time matches, Gallen is the most-capped player in Cronulla's history and can achieve the prestigious 350-game mark with an injury-free 2019.

Gallen, 37, thought long and hard about hanging up the boots this year.

However, following a 2018 season which saw him finish with the most average meters gained of any Cronulla forward (138m), Gallen has decided to go around again.

Paul Gallen has signed for another season.
Paul Gallen has signed for another season.

He signed the new contract - believed to be worth the smallest amount of his career - with Sharks CEO Barry Russell on Tuesday.

Gallen has previously declared he will farewell the Sharks in 2019 with an eye on both a second premiership and mentoring role.

"Personally, I believe I've got plenty left to give, which has ultimately led me to make this decision,'' Gallen told the Sharks website in August.

"If I play 15 games or 25 games next year, while winning is the main aim, part of my role will also be to bring through and to help develop the next crop of talented young players at our club, as I've tried to do in recent years and as I'll continue to do.

"I can say that 2019 will be my last season, I now have an end date and with the talent we have here at the Sharks I am confident this year and next can be successful for myself and the Cronulla club."

Paul Gallen is set to play a record-breaking 19th consecutive season.
Paul Gallen is set to play a record-breaking 19th consecutive season.

Gallen missed the Sharks' preliminary final exit against the Melbourne Storm due to a shoulder injury.

The injury is responding well to physiotherapy treatment and Gallen is believed to be in no doubt for round one next year.

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