Cronulla halves pair Shaun Johnson and Chad Townsend are split on who would come out on top in a potential boxing bout between their Sharks skipper Paul Gallen and former Warriors teammate Manu Vatuvei.

Interest is growing among footy fans hoping to see the former Australian international face off in the ring against the giant ex-Kiwis winger, following Gallen's recent knockout win over former NRL bad boy John Hopoate and Vatuvei's successful boxing debut against Dave Letele late last year.

Gallen remains undefeated after nine fights having made short work of Hopoate in claiming a second round knockout in Sydney last month, while Vatuvei demolished Letele in just 28 seconds in Christchurch in December.

However, Johnson and Townsend were unable to agree on who would go the distance in a fight between their good friends, when asked to pick a winner during an interview with NRL.com.

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Having only recently joined Cronulla on a three-year deal following his controversial departure from the Warriors, Johnson was remaining loyal to 'The Beast'.

"I'll go Manu, but that's [because] he's family, he's long time family. But Gallen's had more fights, he's more experienced," said Johnson.

Townsend was not so quick with an answer, with the Cronulla junior having kick-started his NRL career during two seasons at the Warriors alongside Vatuvei (2014-2015), before returning to the Sharks and playing with Gallen in the club's historic premiership win in 2016.

After hedging his bets a little by praising Vatuvei's "power" and "super impressive" performance against Letele, he eventually admitted he believed Gallen would have the edge.

Cronulla captain Paul Gallen celebrates winning against John Hopoate in Sydney last month. Photo / Getty Images.
Cronulla captain Paul Gallen celebrates winning against John Hopoate in Sydney last month. Photo / Getty Images.

"I know how technical Gal is with his boxing," said Townsend.

"If I had to pick then I'd have to go Gal. Manu has the power but I'm going to say Gal. Sorry Manu."