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Panthers forward James Fisher-Harris.

No-nonsense Penrith back-rower James Fisher-Harris is relishing life under Ivan Cleary as he aims to become one of the game's most consistent forwards.

The Panthers have struggled for consistency in 2019 but Fisher-Harris has repaid the faith in spades to play every minute in nine games this season for the first time in his Telstra Premiership career.

The quietly-spoken Kiwi international averaged 51, 41 and 58 minutes per game over the past three years since he made his debut in 2016.

Those figures have increased to 77.4 per game this year with Fisher-Harris playing full games in all but two performances.

A head knock against the Eels in last week's win was the only sore point in an otherwise hard-working start to the year.

"It's tough work but I love it, the best I've ever felt physically," Fisher-Harris told

"It's just happened that way, Ivan has given me a bit more of a role this year and I do whatever the team needs. I feel like I'm a lot fitter and have adapted this year."

The only thing Fisher-Harris wants to tidy up in his game is around first contact options in defence.

Panthers v Sea Eagles - Round 12

The 23-year-old has 51 missed tackles for the year, sitting third among all players in the NRL (he also ranks fourth for tackles made).

"I've got to clean up a few things, my ruck control is down and I've got to pick and choose when to play or when to run so I'm still learning there," he said.  

"It might come down to fatigue but I've also got to wrap up the player a bit better."

Panthers five-eighth James Maloney believes Fisher-Harris will challenge the competition as one of the hardest-working players in the game over the next decade.

"He's a quiet bloke that doesn't say a lot or get the accolades but we hold him in high regard here," Maloney said.

"He's a tough player and gets through a mountain of work. He's always had a good engine and is the sort of player you want to play with and that's a good a rap anyone can get in this game.

"He's always looking for improvement and I think he got a lot out of that tour at the end of last season learning with some of the older heads with the Kiwi boys in the UK."

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