Johnson granted immediate release by Sharks

1 month ago 9
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Shaun Johnson has been granted an immediate release by the Cronulla Sharks as he prepares to return home to New Zealand with his wife and daughter.

Johnson, his wife Kayla and daughter Millah will return to New Zealand on Wednesday, with the Sharks approving the playmaker's request to return home early amid the delicate situation surrounding international travel due to COVID-19 outbreaks around Australia.

MORE: The 'catalyst' in Johnson's Warriors reunion

The 30-year-old was facing an indefinite period on the sidelines after suffering an injury in Round 19 and would not have been able to return for the remainder of the season. He has already agreed to a two-year deal with the New Zealand Warriors from 2022.

Shaun Johnson made 44 appearances for the Cronulla Sharks after joining the club back in 2019 (Getty)

"We acknowledge and thank Shaun for his three years at the Sharks," Sharks CEO Dino Mezzatesta said in a club statement on Tuesday.

"Shaun was the ultimate professional on the field, the highlight being him winning the Porter Gallen Medal as the Club's best after an outstanding 2020 season.

"He was also popular and always engaging with our members, fans and corporate partners in making a significant contribution off the field as well.

"Everybody at the Sharks wishes him a speedy and full recovery from his current injury and all the best for his return to the Warriors in 2022."

Johnson will re-join the team he played 162 NRL games for between 2011 and 2018 (Getty)

After joining Cronulla in 2019, Johnson played in 44 matches, scoring six tries. He was enjoying a stellar year in 2020 before an Achilles injury prematurely ended his season.

"I can't thank the Club, staff, members and fans enough for the past three seasons," Johnson said in the Sharks statement.

"I've loved every minute in the black, white and blue, suiting up with the boys each week is something I never take for granted and thank them for welcoming me and making Cronulla my home away from home.

"Although it's not the way I wanted it to finish, I leave with a smile and good relationships. UpUp!."

The Auckland native returns to the team in the Warriors where he played 162 games between 2011 and 2018.

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