I'm a Cronulla player now: Woods switches to Sharks from Bulldogs
Front-rower Aaron Woods has settled in with his new team on Tuesday within a matter of hours after making a mid-season switch to the Cronulla Sharks from the Canterbury Bulldogs.
The deal has been done for the prop to play for the Sharks this Friday in Auckland and he was named in Cronulla's 21-man squad on Tuesday afternoon.
"I've been given a really good opportunity from Cronulla here and coming here to meet everyone today, meeting [CEO] Barry Russell, it's been enormous," he said.
"I can't thank them enough for taking me on board and I'm really looking forward to ripping in with the boys and getting on with the job. This happened all last minute, obviously there was dealings behind the scenes but I only found out this morning after training with the Bulldogs boys.
"I'm a Cronulla player now and I'm really happy to be here."
Cronulla coach Shane Flanagan was thrilled to sign the international forward.
"Aaron is a quality player and I am confident he can add something to our team this year and into the future," Flanagan said.
"I also believe our club can help Aaron get back to the previous form which had him playing for NSW and Australia.
"We're pleased to have him on board and look forward to what he can bring to our team."
It is understood the Bulldogs, Sharks and Woods's management came to an agreement on Tuesday morning and Woods is believed to have taken a pay cut to join the club for the remainder of his contract which runs until the end of 2021.
"The Bulldogs and Aaron have decided that now is the right time for this move to happen," Bulldogs chief executive Andrew Hill said on Tuesday.
"It is a difficult decision for both parties, however, both Aaron and the club believe it is in their best interests for this to happen now.
"What it does allow is for Aaron to join his new club before the upcoming deadline and for the Bulldogs to be able to start to plan for the future with additional cap space.
"It has been well documented that we have had very little flexibility with our cap going forward and this will now allow us to look to the future with increased flexibility around our options.
"We wish Aaron all the very best for the future."
The 27-year-old has represented Australia 15 times including at last year's World Cup and made 14 State of Origin appearances for NSW, and played 14 games for the Bulldogs after playing 146 matches for the Wests Tigers between 2011 and 2017.