The Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs have secured the services of NSW State of Origin representative Michael Ennis long-term, with the hooker agreeing to a new three year contract extension with the Club.
The new contract takes Ennis through to the end of the 2014 NRL season and comes as a huge boost for the Club just two weeks out from its 2011 season opener against the Wests Tigers, to be played on Monday 14 March at ANZ Stadium.
Ennis has come on in leaps and bounds since joining the Bulldogs prior to the start of the 2009 season, earning the first of his four State of Origin appearances that year while also representing Country Origin (2009-10), the Prime Minister’s XIII (2010) and the NRL All Stars (2011).
He says that the decision to re-commit to the Bulldogs was the right one for a number of reasons.
“From day one I’ve felt at home here at the Bulldogs and I’m really pleased to be staying,” Ennis said.
“I turn 27 this month and the decision just felt right, both for myself as a footballer and also for my wife and children. From the first time I met Todd Greenberg and Kevin Moore, as well as the rest of the staff and playing group, I knew that the Club would act in the best interests of myself and my family and in turn I want to do my best for the Club.
“Also, I’m really happy to have my future sorted before the start of the season and now I can focus on making this year and the years to come as successful as possible. Certainly, with the likes of Josh Morris, Greg Eastwood, Frank Pritchard, Trent Hodkinson and more here well into the future I think that Bulldogs Members and everyone who follows the Club can look forward to an exciting time in its history.”
Bulldogs head coach Kevin Moore says as one of the squad’s senior players, securing Ennis’ services for three more years gives the Bulldogs added stability and direction.
“Mick is the kind of player that any head coach would love to have in his side,” Moore said. “He leaves nothing to chance. He’s a natural leader, is about the fittest bloke in the team, and he gives us outstanding direction on and off the field.
“Anyone who follows Rugby League knows what a fierce competitor he is, and away from the paddock he’s exactly the type of person that you love to have around the Club. I’m very pleased that he’s going to be a part of the Club long-term.”
Ennis will play his 50th match for the Bulldogs early in the 2011 season, and is on track to play his 150th career NRL game this year, given he will start the season with 132 matches to his name.
He has a career points tally of 300, from 21 tries and 108 goals, earned in stints at the Bulldogs, Brisbane, St. George-Illawarra and Newcastle, where he made his NRL debut in round 20 of the 2003 season.
“Mick was always keen to stay here at the Bulldogs and I’m thankful to both him and his management that we’ve been able to get him squared away before the start of the season,” Bulldogs Chief Executive Todd Greenberg said.
“We are over the moon to have him locked in until at least 2014 and I’d like to think that he sees himself staying here beyond that time. We’d love to see him finish his career as one of the Club’s greats.”