Greenshields determined to stop Rhinos
Catalan Dragons full-back Clint Greenshields is confident his side can bring Leeds Rhinos’ title defence to a halt in Perpignan on Friday and extend his Stobart Super League career by at least another week.
Greenshields is calling a halt to his six-year stint in the south of France and returning to an uncertain future in Australia.
But he is hoping to mark his farewell home appearance on a winning note, especially after his side’s crushing 46-6 defeat at Wigan Warriors last week.
“We’re a lot better side than everyone saw on Friday night,” he said. “A few things didn’t go our way and we couldn’t pick ourselves back up.
“It was very disappointing because we’ve worked so hard to get where we are in the ladder.
“I think we’ve got the essence there to pick it back up and get the ball rolling again for this week. I’ve got no doubt about that.”
Greenshields, the Dragons’ longest-serving overseas player, expects to feel the emotion at the Gilbert Brutus Stadium when he runs out for the last time in front of the fans who have taken him to their heart.
“It will definitely be an emotional time,” he said. “I’ve been there six years and left a lot on the field there.
“I’m going to leave a lot of friends and a lot of special people behind but it’s good timing and it’s what I’ve got to do.
“I have a really close family at home and six years is a bit long to stay away from them.”
Greenshields, who spent three seasons with St George Illawarra before joining the Catalans in 2007, is hoping to pick up a contract with an NRL club, but, if not, will be content to hang up his boots.
“I’d like to carry on playing but only if I can get a start with an NRL club,” he said.
“I’m close to getting a contract but it hasn’t been concreted yet and, if it doesn’t get done, I’m quite prepared to move on as well.
“I’m still keen to play but my decision to go home was not about playing, it was about being home with the family.
“I’m not interested in playing lower grade. I’d rather just have my weekends and enjoy life.”
While Greenshields prepares to possibly bow out at the age of 30, his team-mate and fellow countryman Steve Menzies has decided to play on towards his 40th birthday.
The former Manly Sea Eagles stalwart, who became Super League’s oldest ever player earlier this year, yesterday ended speculation over his future by signing a new contract with the Dragons for 2013.
The former Australian Test forward, who was 35 when he came to Super League with Bradford Bulls in 2009, will start his 21st professional season next February, two months after turning 39.
“I took my time,” he said. “It was an important decision and I wanted to be 100% sure to compete at this level next season.”
Meanwhile, Leeds will be without prop forward Kylie Leuluai for the preliminary semi-final after he was given a one-match ban for punching during his side’s opening play-off win over Wakefield Trinity Wildcats.
Leuluai has missed only one of the Rhinos’ 34 matches so far this season.