Navigating Uncharted Waters: Kyle Flanagan's Dragons Journey Devoid of Nepotism's Embrace

  • Sport
  • Saturday, 25 November 2023 16:30

In a time not so long ago, the mere suggestion of his club pursuing a marquee player for his position would have rattled Kyle Flanagan. The involvement of his father in such decisions would likely have added another layer of discomfort. However, instead of feeling threatened by the looming competition for a spot in the first-grade lineup, Flanagan is embracing the prospect of relinquishing the role of the main man since his arrival at St George Illawarra.

Amidst the winds of change, Flanagan's journey takes a familial turn as he reunites with his coach and father, Shane, at the NRL level for the first time since 2018. Shane Flanagan, in his influential role, has advocated for the retention of Ben Hunt at the club and has expressed interest in bringing in Cowboys playmaker Tom Dearden. Reflecting on his earlier years, Kyle Flanagan acknowledges a shift in perspective, saying, "When I was probably coming into first grade, when I was 19 or 20, I was probably thinking ‘What’s going on here, I don’t want this.'"

Yet, at this juncture in his career, Flanagan welcomes the challenge, stating, "You want these players to come to our club and fight for spots. You want to be part of good footy teams. I’m open to anything like that." Returning to play under his father's guidance, a connection established during his debut at Cronulla, the 25-year-old is now free from the burden of being the team's primary figure.

Expressing relief, Flanagan shares, "Yeah, I definitely feel the weight off my shoulders. It’s not about me here at the Dragons; I’m just looking to play my role at the club. And wherever I fit in, I fit in." No longer consumed by the pressure that characterized his stints at the Roosters and Bulldogs, Flanagan approaches his role with a newfound sense of liberation. "It’s hard to explain, but it definitely feels so refreshing coming to the Dragons, and I’m just going to play my role," he asserts. "I’m at a stage in my career now where I’m not too fussed about where I turn up, how many games I play or whatever it is, I just want to be happy." As he embraces this chapter of his life, Flanagan finds solace in returning home, cherishing moments with his family, and savoring the joys that come with a maturing perspective.

In conclusion, Kyle Flanagan's journey to St George Illawarra marks a pivotal chapter in his career, one defined by a shift in perspective and a sense of liberation. No longer burdened by the weight of being the team's main figure, Flanagan welcomes the competition for first-grade spots, embracing the idea of contributing to a strong and competitive squad.

Reuniting with his father and coach, Shane, adds a familial touch to this phase, rekindling a connection established during his debut at Cronulla. As the Dragons look to solidify their lineup with the retention of players like Ben Hunt and potential signings like Tom Dearden, Flanagan stands poised to play a crucial role in the team's dynamics.

With a palpable sense of relief, Flanagan expresses that his focus is no longer solely on personal achievements but on playing his part within the collective effort of the club. This refreshing perspective reflects a maturity in his approach to the game, emphasizing the importance of happiness both on and off the field.

As Flanagan navigates this new chapter in his career, the Dragons community eagerly anticipates the positive impact he can bring to the team. The weight off his shoulders allows for a more fluid and enjoyable playing experience, demonstrating that, for Flanagan, success is not just about the games played or positions secured but about finding happiness in the journey itself.