You have skipped the navigation, tab for page content
Sharks trio Chad Townsend, Ronaldo Mulitalo and Wade Graham.

The Sharks will feel they have a 10th player on the field at the NRL Nines in Perth: popular prop Fine Kula, who is battling brain cancer.

The back of Cronulla's Nines jerseys features the slogan #FightForFine, the title of a fundraising campaign the club has launched to support the New Zealand-born 21-year-old.

"Whenever we're tired or we're down, we're just going to look at that and think that he'd love to be out there with us. We'll be playing for him," Sharks hooker Blayke Brailey told NRL.com.

The jerseys will be signed and auctioned after the Nines, while the club has also established a GoFundMe page to support Kula.

Kula, who trained in the NRL squad over the pre-season, was forced to retire last month after his diagnosis of grade-four medulloblastoma.

Sharks prop Fine Kula in his playing days.
Sharks prop Fine Kula in his playing days. ©Gregg Porteous/NRL Photos

He's had a shunt inserted in his head to drain excess fluids and will undergo chemotherapy. 

Rising Sharks winger Ronaldo Mulitalo is a childhood friend of Kula's and has been travelling to Liverpool Hospital each day to see him.

In a special presentation after training at PointsBet Stadium on Tuesday, Cronulla coach John Morris revealed the #FightForFine Nines tribute and gave a teary Mulitalo the No.10 jumper, which Kula wore as a standout Sharks junior.

"I knew that Ronnie would be emotional when I gave him the number 10. That's been Ronnie to a tee. Other boys have been out there with him by [Kula's] bedside as well," said Morris, who was key in setting up the #FightForFine campaign.

John Morris talks Josh Morris and Josh Dugan

"It's been an emotional time. It's unchartered waters for a lot of these young men. They haven't experienced this even with some family members let alone their close mate. 

"There was a period there where we knew he was in a little bit of trouble but we didn't quite know the diagnosis and then we found out in camp [in Kiama] last week.

"Obviously the boys are very upset but they've rallied around Fine and the family."

Brailey first met Kula when he moved from New Zealand to play for the Sharks in the under 16 Harold Matthews Cup in 2014.

Kula was named the NSWRL Harold Matthews Player of the Year in 2015 as Cronulla won the grand final and tasted premiership success again two years ago in the Jersey Flegg Cup.

"He's just a great person, always positive, trained really hard," Brailey said. "I remember he used to come to my house before the pre-season, we played UFC [the video game] together.

"It's been pretty tough, training with him and now the news he got. Everyone's supporting him, everyone's behind him. 

"This happening, we've become closer. Everyone's been keeping him in their prayers and we've all been training hard for him."

The Men of League Foundation is set to host a fundraising event later this year to help with Kula's treatment and recovery.