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Feki confident next generation will wing it when he vacates flank

Sosaia Feki's tough decision to leave Cronulla was made simpler by the wealth of promising outside backs in the club's ranks.

The 28-year-old winger has signed with Super League club Castleford on a three-year deal after seven seasons and a premiership with the Sharks.

He knocked back a one-year offer from Cronulla to follow the new path, comfortable the time is right to step aside for the next generation.

Ronaldo Mulitalo, 19, starred in last Sunday's clash with the Wests Tigers and has scored five tries in eight games, while 22-year-old Sione Katoa is proving to be a spectacular finisher.

"We always do extras after training - I'm always helping Ronaldo and Sione doing kick catching," Feki told NRL.com.

"There's lots of talent coming through. Sione and Ronaldo, they know how to do their job. They're young and they've got a few years in front of them. Ronaldo's got a twin brother [Lorenzo] in the under 20s that plays wing as well.

"I'm at the age where I sit there and watch the young boys come through. The club's in good hands." 

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Feki will enter his sixth finals series when the Sharks face Manly in an elimination playoff at Lottoland on Saturday night.

Not one to court attention, Feki is pleased his impending departure has been somewhat forgotten amongst the hoopla surrounding retiring captain Paul Gallen.

It's only just dawned on the softly spoken flanker that his days in the black, white and blue are almost over.

"At half-time [of our last home game] we had a little bit of a goodbye celebration for me. [I was injured so] I rode on the back of a ute," Feki said.

"It pretty much hit me there when I was waving at the fans that I only have a short time left at the club."

With Mulitalo suspended over a shoulder charge, Aaron Gray has been named as Feki's wing partner against the Sea Eagles.

Feki has no doubt the former Rabbitoh can hold his own in the finals cauldron.

Gray, who had surgery on his knee mid-year and expected to finish the season in the Canterbury Cup, said he's ready to capitalise on the opportunity.

"It's a funny game, rugby league. It's my first finals game so I'm excited," Gray said.

The former City Origin representative understands exactly what's required, reassured by the extra training with Feki and the squad's other wing specialists during the season.

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"It gives you a lot confidence, getting a few big bombs off the halves and going in and talking tactics with the boys," Gray said.

"Especially Feki, he's such an experienced player and he always has some helpful advice."

Gray has been dealt a rough hand with injuries since his 2015 debut with South Sydney but has accepted the adversity.

"It is a little bit frustrating, a bit stop-starty with some little niggles and that. That's just footy," Gray said.

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"Some people go through their whole career injury free and have a brilliant career and some people are plagued by them."

Off contract at season's end, Gray is hoping a strong playoff performance will net him a new deal for 2020.

"It definitely helps if you're playing finals footy in a team like the Sharks with some good depth there," he said.

"I'm not too fussed about that at the moment - something will come round hopefully. If not, I've got a few things in place."

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