By Nathan Davis
St George Illawarra Dragons second-rower Adam Tuimavave-Gerrard concedes he is going through the toughest pre-season of his career to date.
The Junior Kiwi international recently joined the Club on a two-year contract having previously been a vital cog in the New Zealand Warriors National Youth Competition team’s 2014 Premiership win.
Tuimavave-Gerrard admits he has sought guidance from the squad’s more experienced players and staff since arriving and has singled out teammate Joel Thompson for his assistance.
“Each day of pre-season is getting harder,” said Tuimavave-Gerrard.
“We are working more and more and as the temperature rises it can be really difficult.
“But I know doing all this is helping me become a better player.
“McGregor’s instructions to me were to work as hard as I can, and that’s what I’m trying to do.
“NRL is obviously the goal I have for the two years I’m under contract and to achieve that I need work hard.
“I need to become fitter and stronger in order for me to reach my potential.
“I’ve found that being around the boys and the coaching staff here at the Dragons has been really good for me.
“The older boys take me aside and give me a few tips here and there and I really feel that’s helping me become a better player.
“Joel Thompson in particular has shown me a lot.
“He is a second-rower as well so he knows what I need to do and how to do it.
“He’s also my weight lifting partner and it always pushing and supporting me.
“Playing with players like Benji Marshall, it’s great.
“I’m still buzzing and I can’t wait to get an opportunity to play with him, so I’m working really hard to push myself and try to achieve that.”