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Raiders lock Shaun Fensom says Edrick Lee will be missed out wide but added the squad had faith in replacement Bill Tupou. Copyright: Renee McKay/NRL Photos.
The Raiders have secured the services of one of the hardest working men in the NRL, with lock Shaun Fensom re-signing for a further three years in a move that will keep him in the nation’s capital until the end of 2017.
Fensom’s signing locks down a vital cog in the Green Machine’s engine room, as the Bellingen junior is one of the Raiders most consistent performers and last year topped the competition for average tackles, getting through a phenomenal 47.3 tackles a match.
Fensom said he was pleased to make the announcement early in the season, and also excited at the prospect of leading the next generation of Raiders stars under new coach Ricky Stuart.
“It’s a lot of pressure off me now and I can just concentrate on playing football. It’s good that my future is secured here until the end of 2017 at the club I love playing for,” said Fensom, who is a two-time winner of the club’s best player award, the Meninga Medal (2011, 2012).
“We’ve got a really good core of players here and we are building towards something special and I wanted to be a part of that and that’s why I’ve re-signed.
“We’re a young side with some good experience and I’ve got the close age gap between the two groups and I get along with everyone, so I really enjoy being part of this team,” he said. “It’s good to be a leader on and off the field and I’m happy just to get out there and play football each week.”
The 25 year-old has been a cornerstone of the Raiders pack since making his debut in 2009, and has started this year in typical workhorse fashion, leading the Raiders for most tackles (98) and all runs (35) in their two matches this year.
Fensom is well-respected as a leader at the club and has been earmarked for a leadership role in the future after captaining the Raiders NYC team to the competition’s inaugural premiership in 2008.
Off the field Fensom is also making strides as he works his way through a building apprenticeship.
“You have to plan for the future and I really enjoy my time on the tools learning about becoming a builder and preparing for my career after football,” he said.
Raiders football manager John Bonasera said Fensom’s re-signing was great news for the club and that the backrower’s work ethic is one he would like to see replicated throughout the club.
“Shaun is one of the most committed and hardworking players in the club and the Raiders are delighted to have him stay on-board for a further three seasons,” said Bonasera.
“He continues to set the example on and off the field and with players like Shaun staying at the club the future is bright for the Raiders.”
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