For retiring Sharks hooker Michael Ennis it is now or never, if the former Blues Origin hooker wants to leave the game with a premiership ring.

In late July of this year, much to the surprise of the NRL community, the 32 year-old announced he would walk away from the game at seasons end.

After 13 seasons in the NRL, with five different clubs, spanning over 250 club games, 8 Origin matches and a whole lot of niggling this is his last chance at winning a premiership.

Should the Sharks go all the way and make the 2016 decider with Ennis staying injury and suspension free, it will be the first time the veteran will lace up his boots on Grand Final day despite two of his previous clubs playing on the first weekend in October whilst Ennis was on the books.

The 250 game veteran has been robbed of premiership glory in the past when he had to watch his Brisbane Broncos teammates triumph on grand final day after tearing his ACL early on in that year and again in 2014 through injury, Ennis missed the Bulldogs grand final loss against the South Sydney Rabbitohs.

However, missing these games is what Ennis believes has made him a better player during the latter stages of his career.  

“Those days (missing the two grand finals) were difficult but they also have driven me.

“It’s also part of the reason why I feel, I’ve played some of my best football at the back end of my career.

The former Bulldogs captain, played a pivotal role in the Sharks winning a club-record 15 straight matches in 2016. Yet the Sharks go into the finals series ‘out of form,’ having registered only one win in their past five matches, which Ennis believes was his side becoming complacent knowing they had already made the finals.

“We played some great football throughout the year but when we knew we had made the finals we treaded water a bit.”

“We went away from doing the little things with the intent that we were doing throughout that period and you only have to be off a little bit to get beat in this competition,” Ennis said.  

Being unable to play his part on the field on grand final day twice before, is making Ennis more determined than ever before to end his career with the NRL’s highest achievement.

“It’s that sheer drive to try and win one.”  Ennis said.