Sam Tagataese at Sharks training during Grand Final Week.

Tagataese's fate in Flanagan's hands

A fully fit Sharks prop Sam Tagataese is keenly awaiting whether he will make the cut to play the Melbourne Storm in the NRL Telstra Premiership Grand Final. 

Tagataese fractured his scapula back in the Sharks' Round 22 loss to the Raiders and has missed the past six games following surgery as a result. 

Tagataese was picked on a six-man bench by Flanagan on Tuesday afternoon and is set to keep Kurt Capewell out of the 17 that beat reigning premiers North Queensland in last weekend's preliminary final. 

 

"I have done and passed all the tests that the Sharks said I needed to do to make myself available," Tagataese told NRL.com. 

"I knew it was bad initially [when it happened] so it was tough to take in, but I still had a bit of hope that I could be back in time. 

"Now it just comes down to Flanno and who he wants to pick."

The Samoan international said it would mean the world to play in the Sharks' first grand final in a unified competition since 1978. 

The 29-year-old said the big engines of his fellow Sharks forwards should also work in his favour. 

"Opportunities don't come around like this often. If [Flanagan] picks me I'll do everything I can – well I've done everything I can – but I'll certainly put my best foot forward for the team and do whatever I can on the field," Tagataese said.

"It would be remarkable to play. What works in my favour in a way is that we have some big forwards who can play long minutes. So if that means it's 10 minutes here or there on the field that could be it. 

"But if Flanno reckons that best fits and suits the team, I'm going to be happy. 

"Just as long as I'm there."