Nicho Hynes urged to lean on Roger Federer amid nightmare month for under-fire NRL gun

Hynes is seemingly down on confidence after a nightmare month of football.

Cronulla playmaker Nicho Hynes has been urged to channel tennis champion Roger Federer as he attempts to overcome a horror month that has left him down on form and confidence. Hynes was dumped following the Blues' heavy defeat in Origin I and watched on as his replacement Mitchell Moses caught fire to lift NSW to a series-levelling win in game two.

Two nights later, Hynes missed a field goal from right in front to deny Cronulla a golden point victory over Canterbury. That followed a conversion miss after the siren that would have sent the Sharks' previous match against the Dolphins into extra-time.

Pictured left Roger Federer and right Nicho Hynes
Nicho Hynes has been urged to learn from tennis champion Roger Federer as he looks to recapture the form that saw him win the 2022 Dally M. Image: Getty

It's led to concerns Hynes is mentally scarred and carrying his Origin disappointment into the NRL. Cronulla coach Craig Fitzgibbon disagreed, declaring after the Dogs loss: "That (icing games) is part of the job and responsibility of your spine and playmakers.

"That will sting. He's got to dust himself off pretty quick and look forward to the next moment. It's going to shape him. He's got to go through it. He's been stung before and carried his divots a little but I feel now he's ready to keep going after the moments."

Skipper Cameron McInnes added: "He's our guy, he's our man. We're all behind him. We will do great things with him leading us. Nothing's changed."

SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - SEPTEMBER 17: Nicholas Hynes of the Sharks and Cameron McInnes of the Sharks after the NRL Semi Final match between the Cronulla Sharks and the South Sydney Rabbitohs at Allianz Stadium on September 17, 2022 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Jason McCawley/Getty Images)
Sharks captain Cameron McInnis says the club has full faith in Nicho Hynes.

Mindset and performance coach Mark Zimmermann has worked with leaders in sport and business through his On The Mark programs. He believes Hynes can lean on the words of grand slam legend Federer as he looks to put the recent past behind him and kick-start the Sharks' revival.

"We talk about motivation levels, confidence levels, anxiety levels, performing under pressure, controlling emotion…all of this those things that have an impact on performance" Zimmermann told Yahoo Sport Australia. "Roger Federer stated that his average success rate at winning shots throughout his professional career was only 55% success rate.


"That means that one of the greatest tennis players of our time missed 45% of his shots. His message was clear for someone in Nicho's position - take each shot with the intention to win, but if you miss the shot you cannot dwell on it because the next shot awaits.

"There are two kinds of players in that situation - those who fall into a slump and wallow in self- doubt and believe it's over, and those who remind themselves of their strengths, recognise the areas they need to work on and go to work on improving. Nicho is a seasoned player at the highest level so he will more than likely be reminding himself that one poor performance does not define a player's future." After four losses in their last five games, Cronulla take on Gold Coast in Coffs Harbour on Friday night.