HE'S been starring on the NRL field for the past few years, but Will Kennedy made a trip down memory lane last week.
The Cronulla Sharks fullback visited Bathurst High on Friday, November 25, which he attended from year 7 to 9 before heading to Sydney, where he spoke with students and ran them through a few drills.
Kennedy said it was great to be back in Bathurst.
"It's good to come back to Bathurst. I went here for a couple of years and enjoyed every moment of it," he said.
"I was here from year 7 to 9, before I went to Endeavour Sports High. I decided to move, to start my new journey."
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While he was too young to get a run in the Astley Cup rugby league team, he still has fond memories of the tri-school competition.
"I think I was watching a bit of it," he said.
"I did play some footy here We won the uni shield. That was one of my good memories, as a student here. I really enjoyed playing here."
Kennedy said it was great to see how the school has changed since he left almost a decade ago.
"It's really good to see how it's developed," he said.
"There's new classes, a new hall. It's pretty cool to come back and see it all.
"It's good to come back and see the kids. Hopefully they enjoy it and I enjoy it too. It will be great to connect with the kids from where I went to school."
Kennedy's pre-season training for the Sharks is expected to start later this month, but he has enjoyed the time off during the off-season.
"I'm enjoying it while it last. I go back on November 25, so not too long to go," he said.
"I'm just enjoying it with my family.
Cronulla shocked most pundits to finish second at the end of the 2022 NRL regular season, before bowing out after two-straight finals losses.
Kennedy is confident his team has what it takes to win the grand final in 2023.
"A top four finish, we did really well last season," he said.
"There's a new culture that Fitzy [coach Craig Fitzgibbon] has brought in and he's a great coach to play under.
"We had a great bunch of boys playing too. We had a good season but hopefully we can have an even better one next year.
"I reckon we can go all the way. We've got the team to do and we've got the coaching staff backing us as well. I reckon we can go all the way, we just need to be consistent and playing our style."
While he might be relaxing and enjoying the off-season, Kennedy has been watching the Rugby League World Cup and he was impressed with Samoa's run to the final, which they ultimately lost to Australia.
"I've watched the World Cup. I think Samoa shocked everyone but I think it was good that they made the final," he said.
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