Wests Magpies junior Sauaso Sue is determined to finish his time at the club on a high but hopes his new life at Belmore next year will get him out of his comfort zone.
The Macquarie Fields Hawks junior was a part of the grand final-winning Tigers NYC team in 2012 alongside current clubmate and fellow Magpie David Nofoaluma.
With his future up in the air for much of this year, Sue ended up making the decision that was best for his young family and taking a two-year deal at Belmore over the one-year offer to remain in Ivan Cleary’s side.
“I’m pretty relieved but also pretty sad to leave the Tigers,” Sue told NRL.com.
"But I think the club’s in a good spot at the moment, there’s a good culture here now and I’m excited for what lies ahead in the next chapter of my life.
“I’m really sad to leave the club, it’s the only club I’ve been at being a West Tigers junior. I’ve really enjoyed my time here. The next couple of weeks I really want to give it my best. That’s what the club deserves.”
Sue will be going from one rebuilding club to another and next year joins the likes of Nick Meaney, Jack Cogger and Christian Crichton as fresh faces for a club that is restricted in the player market by its salary cap position. The Bulldogs’ forward depth has been tested this year and Sue, who has been dropped to ISP a few times this year for the first time since breaking into first grade in 2013, shapes as a good fit.
“I’m excited for what lies ahead. The Bulldogs are in a rebuilding phase and I think my style of footy, the ad-line, hard running is what the Doggies need,” he said.
“I think my playing style will fit straight in there. Dean Pay seems like a good coach and the guys there seem like a good bunch of boys. I’m excited for next year.”
A strong recommendation from current clubmates and former Bulldogs Moses Mbye and Josh Reynolds, plus the chance to team up with the likes of Josh Jackson and David Klemmer, helped sell Sue on the Belmore idea.
“[Mbye and Reynolds] loved it there. Both of them said there’s no egos there and they’re a good bunch of young guys,” he said.
"[Jackson and Klemmer] are both aggressive and do the job and they’ll raise my aggressiveness to try and fit in there, I think they’ll bring the best out of me and get me out of my comfort zone there.
“Playing in a different club, new surroundings, new people, new teammates, [it’s about] trying to fit in there and getting a good pre-season under my belt and hopefully do well next year.”
Sue’s primary focus remains this year, and the slim glimmer of hope – if either the Broncos or Warriors lose both their remaining games – the team could sneak into the top eight with two wins.
“There is a small chance. We’re just focusing on this week,” he said.
"The opportunity was there for us on the weekend (against the Dragons at Leichhardt) and we didn’t take it. The next two weeks we need to make sure when we get those small chances that we do capitalise and finish on a high.
"I’ve got a lot of pride wearing the Tigers jersey and just making sure I leave the jersey in a good spot and play my best footy in the next few weeks and leave on a high.
“We have a lot of confidence in the club still even though we didn’t win on the weekend, we’ve got good leaders, the standards at training and off the field are high.”