Xerri eyes return to do right by family
SUSPENDED Sharks star Bronson Xerri hasn’t closed the book on returning to the NRL, although he hasn’t “touched a football” since being banned last year.
The 20-year-old centre was stood down last May after returning a positive test to anabolic steroids. A B sample confirmed his positive result in September.
But Xerri last night said that he was trying to stay resilient and wanted to make his family proud again one day.
“I’m only 20 years old, so whatever time I get, I know I’m going to put my best foot forward,” Xerri (pictured) told Nine News. “I want to make my family proud again.”
Before being stood down, Xerri seemingly had the world at his feet.
He was the Sharks’ rising star in 2019, finished as the league’s 12thhighest tryscorer with 13 from 22 games, including a h a t - t r i c k against the Dragons in round 25 and a double the next week.
Xerri faces a long route back to the game if he does attempt a comeback after being banned for four years.
He has appealed against the provisional four-year ban at the NRL Appeals Tribunal but is yet to learn the outcome.
Xerri can draw inspiration from Sandor Earl, who made his comeback with the Storm in 2018 after he too was banned for four years for using and trafficking a performanceenhancing drug in 2013.
Xerri said the “ban” was on him and had nothing to do with his family.
“This is all on myself and it’s a mistake I did, not my family,” he said. “That was the hardest part, to tell my family and to let them go through what I was going through.”
Xerri didn’t want to go into the specifics of his drug use but instead is trying to focus on his mental health.
“Throughout that period I was very depressed and at home doing nothing,” he said.
“I was just staying home and thinking about everything. It just didn’t seem real to me. I haven’t even watched a game of football yet and I haven’t even touched a football.”