The Sydney Roosters have won a see-sawing contest at Remondis Stadium tonight in front of 12163 fans defeating the Cronulla Sharks 24-18.
The home team received an early Easter present before the game tonight, with news inspirational leader Paul Gallen would make an early return from the ankle injury he suffered in round one.
The skipper had an immediate effect on the home team making plenty of bustling runs early on to put his team on the front foot giving his outside backs plenty of room to move.
Ricky Leutele capitalised with the first try of the night after putting a neat in and away and palm on the chest of Sonny Bill Williams to race 45 metres down the left touch line to cross in the 15th minute. Gordon hit the conversion sweetly from out wide to give his team a 6-0 lead.
The Roosters were quick to hit back with a try to in form Boyd Cordner in the 19th minute after he angled on to a short ball from Tuivasa-Sheck to level the scores at six all.
The Roosters crossed again in the 25th minute after some end to end play from both teams which would set the tone for the remainder of the match.
Todd Carney tried a chip and chase but failed to regather and Tuivasa-Sheck made an electric run up towards halfway before drawing and passing for Maloney to race away and score giving the Roosters a 12-6 lead which they took into the break.
The home team came out firing in the second half and scored quickly through Sharks back-rower Wade Graham after a bust down the right from Blake Ayshford. Gordon levelled the scores with the conversion.
In perhaps the turning point of the match, Roosters winger Shaun Kenny-Dowall raced the length of the field to score, bursting onto a Carney kick across field after the Sharks had been attacking deep in the Roosters red zone.
The Roosters were beginning to control the game with some strong charges and a smart kicking game, trapping the Sharks deep in their own half until a Maloney grubber rolled dead.
The Sharks then scored an amazing 80m try after Jonathan Wright took a quick 20m restart and sent the ball to Leutele in space, who put another nice move on to send his winger Sosaia Feki on a 50 metre sprint down the left to score. Gordon again converted to level the scores once again at 18 all.
The knockout blow came in the 71st minute when Rooster's half Mitchell Pearce backed up his own kick to put Jennings into space and eventually send Kenny-Dowall over for a double. Maloney nailed the kick from the sideline to give his side what proved to be an unassailable lead.
Next week the Roosters will take on the Dragons in the traditional Anzac Day battle with the Dragons while the Sharks will be at home again to the Panthers.