Raiders stun shocking Sharks

The Canberra Raiders have stunned the Cronulla Sharks with an upset victory at Toyota Stadium, 36-4 in front of 12,139 fans.

Despite the home side being awarded back to back penalites in the opening minutes, for 30 minutes of the first half it was all the visitors.

The flow of possession saw the Raiders post first points after only four minutes. Sam Williams found a gap in the Sharks defensive line following a massive 70 metre line break from Reece Robinson. As a result, the Raiders were 6-0 leaders.

Minutes later Jarrod Croker contested a kick just shy of the goal-line to pluck it out of the air to plant the ball down. A simple solo try for him, which he converted himself, gave the Raiders a 12 point lead after 11 minutes.

The Sharks defenders failed to stop the raid as Josh Papallii cracked the goal line for an easy four-pointer 19 minutes in. Croker with the attempt at goal extended the lead to 18 points.

Papalii was in the action again as he broke free of defenders to link up with Blake Ferguson who stepped over the line to add to the Raiders' tally. The Sharks looked disinterested in the match, and this saw the home side down 24-0 after half an hour.

A brief turn in possession saw the Sharks hit back with their only try of the match as Mark Taufua darted over the whitewash, taking a lovely pass from John Morris. Todd Carney had a game to forget - and his goalkicking showed it with a shocking attempt at conversion. At half time the Raiders remained 24-4 leaders.

The second half saw a scrappy affair with both sides making simple errors. A number of forward passes denied Raiders more points, however in his return, Josh Dugan claimed a try of his own. The former NSW fullback took an intercept ball thanks to a poor play from Carney, which saw him streak away the length of the field to score. Once again, the poor attitude from the Sharks conceded points.
 
The Raiders stuck to their game plan and played the full 80 minutes. Jarrod Croker was awarded his second try of the afternoon after diving in off a kick from Sam Williams. Jarrod converted to seal the match and collected a personal points haul of 20. 
 
The Green Machine claimed a victory 36-4 by fulltime to keep their final hopes alive for 2012. The Sharks will be tested once again as they face the Penrith Panthers next week, while the Raiders tackle the Knights at home in Canberra.

Photo Credit: Chris (@Vossy7)

Match Details
Cronulla Sutherland Sharks 4 were defeated by Canberra Raiders 36
National Rugby League - Round 20 - Sunday July 22, 2012 2:00pm
Venue: Toyota Stadium
Referee: Shayne Hayne and Henry Perenara
Video Referee: Pat Reynolds
Touch Judges: Jason Walsh and Dave Munro
Crowd: 12,139
Halftime: Cronulla Sutherland Sharks 4 Canberra Raiders 24

Leagueunlimited.com players of the match:
3 Points - Jarrod Croker (2 Tries, 5 Conversions)
2 Points - Josh Dugan (1 Try)
1 Point - Joel Thompson

Cronulla Sutherland Sharks (4)
Tries: Mark Taufua
Conversions: Todd Carney (0/1)

Canberra Raiders (36)
Tries: Josh Dugan, Jarrod Croker (2), Blake Ferguson, Sam Williams, Josh Papalii
Conversions: Jarrod Croker (5/5)

LeagueUnlimited.com Live Commentary Welcome to League Unlimited's coverage of SUNDAY AFTERNOON football LIVE from Toyota Stadium as the Cronulla Sharks host the Canberra Raiders.

In team changes. Just the one change for the Sharks, they see Nathan Stapleton is out. He is replaced in the starting line up by John Williams.

Canberra will be missing Edrick Lee, as he makes way for the returning Josh Dugan. Reece Robinson takes Edrick Lee's wing spot.
Both teams still on the field here at Toyota Stadium. There are finishing up their pre game warming ups before returning into the sheds for the final message from their coaches. Kick off will be just after 2PM.
The Raiders are first out of the sheds head of kick off. The Raiders will get us underway with the kick off in just moments as the Sharks now exit the tunnel.
1 min: Josh Dugan fires the ball off the tee to get us underway here at Shark Park.
1 min: Penalty to the Sharks against Josh Papalii for spearing the legs of the kicker in Jeff Robson. First chance inside the Raiders red zone as they attack 10 metres from the line.
2 min: Another penalty to the Sharks for the Raiders not clearing the ruck quickly. They take the quick tap and continue to attack inside the Raiders 10 metre line.
3 min: WOW! Reece Robinson took the bomb in the field of play and raced 70 metres to almost go the length of the field. The Sharks chase him down and the Raiders have a their set from the Sharks 20 metre line.
4 min: TRY
TRY! Canberra Raiders
Sam Williams off a simple pass spots a gap and dives over the line for first points of the afternoon. The Raiders found great field position following a brilliant 70 metre run from Reece Robinson. Jarrod Croker from beside the uprights nailed the kick to make it a six point lead.
Canberra Raiders 6-0
8 min: Josh Dugan unable to come up with the footy under the high ball on the last tackle for the Raiders. The Sharks come up with the ball on their 10 metre line off the change over.
11 min: TRY
TRY! Canberra Raiders
Jarrod Croker leapt for the ball off the kick shy of the goal line and come down with the ball to score the Raiders second try. Croker converted his own try to extend the lead.
Canberra Raiders 12-0
14 min: Jeff Robson fired the kick downfield to complete the set. The ball bounces short goal line and goes over the sideline, as a result the Raiders have scrum feed on the Sharks 10 metre line. So far it's been easy metres gained by the Raiders, the Sharks haven't turned up since the back to back penalties.
16 min: KNOCK ON! After a questionable pass to Shaun Fensom, Travis Waddell attempted to pick up the ball from acting half and knocked on. Scrum feed packs down for the Sharks on the Raiders 20 metre line.
17 min: Not the best option from Jeff Robson, a mid set kick saw Josh Dugan kick it up for himself and take it well. Raiders start their set on the Sharks 10 metre line.
18 min: Josh McCrone finds a gap and takes a sprint up field to gain 35 metres. The Sharks defence lacking at the moment. Danger signs here.
19 min: The Sharks are trapped in goal to give the Raiders a line drop out. Bad to worse for the Sharks as Bryce Gibbs has gone straight up the tunnel with a possible shoulder injury.
19 min: TRY
TRY! Canberra Raiders
Josh Papalii strolls through the defensive line to claim the Raiders 3rd, the Sharks lacking defence thus far. The Raiders making easy metres which leads to points. Jarrod Croker with the conversion attempt extends the lead
Canberra Raiders 18-0
24 min: KNOCK ON! Todd Carney fired the kick across the field and it was too wide for John Williams who knocked it forward back into the field of play. Raiders come up with the ball through a scrum feed on their 10 metre line.
25 min: Penalty to the Sharks, count is now at 3-0. Jarrod Croker pinged for holding the Sharks leg up stopping him from playing the ball. The Sharks with the ball on halfway
27 min: KNOCK ON! Anthony Tupou looking for a running in Wade Graham but Graham failed to hold the ball in the tackle of two Raiders defenders. The Raiders will get another scrum feed on their 20 metre line.
28 min: KNOCK ON! Jarrod Croker firstly made a line break with a strong run downfield, he linked up with a running in Josh McCrone who sprinted down field. He found Josh Dugan with an inside ball but he was ankle tapped. Dugan offloaded as he went to ground to Jarrod Croker but he failed to take the pass and knocked on. The Sharks have possession through a scrum feed on their 10 metre line.
29 min: Another mistake from the Sharks hands over possession to the Raiders. The Scrum packs down for the Raiders on their 40 metre line.
31 min: TRY
TRY! Canberra Raiders
Blake Ferguson has claimed the Raiders 4th try of the afternoon after Josh Papalii found a gap and broke free of the defence. Ferguson in support took the pass and stepped to the line. Simple stuff for the Raiders, the Sharks not looking like a top 4 side this afternoon. Jarrod Croker with the hardest attempt of the day with the kick slot the two points from the touchline.
Canberra Raiders 24-0
34 min: Penalty to the Sharks against Mark Nichols for a leg ball on John Morris in the ruck. The Sharks march up field and attack on the Raiders 20 metre line.
35 min: TRY
TRY! Cronulla Sharks
Mark Taufua has darted over the goal line after after taking a short pass from John Morris. A simple passage of play to get the Sharks back into this contest. However, Todd Carney failed to add the extras from beside the posts.
Canberra Raiders 24-4
37 min: Forward pass the call against the Sharks has John Williams took the pass to attempt to streak away down the near touchline. The scrum packs for the Raiders on half way.
38 min: Jarrod Croker stabbed a grubber kick towards the in goal area but it was taken well by John Williams on the wing. The Sharks will have their final set of the first half from deep in their own half.
39 min: Josh Dugan takes the high kick for the Raiders who will finish the first half with the ball
40 min: HALF TIME here at Toyota Stadium, we have shock on the cards here with the Raiders causing an upset thus far leading the Sharks 24-4 at the break. The Raiders made easy metres to bust through the poor defence of the Cronulla Sharks. We will take a short break here and be back for the second half.
41 min: We are back underway for the second half here at Toyota Stadium after a massive half time dance display. The Sharks kick off to give the Raiders first use.
42 min: KNOCK ON! Wade Graham took the kick and was cleaned up by Josh McCrone in a dumping tackle. Time has been called off, possible rib injury.
44 min: KNOCK ON! Josh Dugan alone at the back failed to take the kick cleanly and coughed up the ball. The Sharks with a great chance to take first blood in the second half. Scrum feed packs on the Raiders 10 metre line.
45 min: Bad to worse for the Raiders, Jarrod Croker ruled to have racked the ball out of the ruck. The Sharks take the quick tap inside the Raiders 10 metre line.
46 min: A poor pass from the Sharks saw the ball go well behind the pass. The Raiders come up with the ball.
48 min: Wade Graham has come off the field now for the Sharks. Certainly won't help their cause. He comes off the field after being dumped in a tackle by Josh McCrone.
48 min: Nothing going right for the Sharks as Jeff Robson fires the kick out on the full over the sideline. The Raiders with the ball on their own 40 metre line to start their set.
49 min: KNOCK ON! Blake Ferguson on the end of quick hands has coughed up the ball as John Williams pushed up and but a hit on Blake Ferguson to knock the ball free. The Sharks with the ball 15 metres out from their goal line.
51 min: After the Sharks not getting the knock on call against Josh Dugan, on the change over the Sharks give away a penalty for being offside at marker. The Raiders attack just on their side of halfway.
52 min: Josh McCrone failed to take the pass and apparently lost it backwards but the Sharks dive on the ball with Issac Gordon. They have possession on their 10 metre line.
54 min: KNOCK ON! Matthew Wright attempt to take the intercept ball but unable to take it, so he knocked on. The Raiders pack down a scrum feed 12 metres from the Sharks goal line. A chance here for the Raiders to close this game out.
55 min: Reece Robinson has bene denied the Raiders 5th try after Josh Dugan's pass was ruled to have been thrown forward. As a result the Sharks have a scrum feed on their 10 metre line.
57 min: Bryce Gibbs has returned to the field after going off with a shoulder injury early in the first half. He is okay obviously as he dived on the loose ball from the Raiders. The Sharks with possession on their 10 metre line.
59 min: Reece Robinson has been pushed over the touchline by two Sharks defenders. Wade Graham is on the bench and doesn't look he will be back today. Meanwhile, the Sharks have a scrum feed on the Raiders 20metre line.
60 min: Todd Carney finds the touchline with a kick to the corner, it rolls over the sideline a metre from the Raiders goal line. The Raiders come up with possession on their 10 metre line. It's and end to end contest with no points scored in the second half.
61 min: A kick from the Raiders almost sends the Josh Dugan in the corner but the ball beats everyone touch in goal. Meanwhile Ben Pomeroy limping from the field.
62 min: A call from the touch judge has seen the pass ruled forward from the Sharks, Tupou to Jeff Robson the call. So, the Raiders continue to hold the lead with 17 minutes to play. They have possession with a scrum feed on half way.
63 min: Another forward pass has been thrown by the Raiders and the Sharks survive once again. Another scrum packs down and the Raiders given up possession on their 10 metre line.
66 min: TRY
TRY! Cronulla Sharks
Josh Dugan has gone the length of the field after taking the poor play from Todd Carney to streak away down the touchline. The Sharks have failed to turn up today. Jarrod Croker nailed the kick at goal to make it a 26 point lead.
Canberra Raiders 30-4
66 min: OFFICIAL CROWD at Toyota Stadium: 12,139
69 min: KNOCK ON! Jason Bukuya just symbolising the Sharks day out with another mistake in the play of the ball. The Raiders pack another scrum feed on the Sharks 35 metre mark.
70 min: Jeff Robson forced to play at the ball to knock it dead. The Raiders earn a repeat set with a line drop out.
72 min: KNOCK ON! Todd Carney stuck the hand out and knocked the ball down. Once again another Sharks error gives the Raiders a scrum feed on their half.
74 min: Video Referee Decision for the Raiders, Croker claiming.
75 min: TRY
TRY! Canberra Raiders
Jarrod Croker gets the GREEN LIGHTS from the video referee after diving on the kick from Sam Williams. Simple play from the outside back to collect his second try of the afternoon. He converted to bring up his personal posits tally of 20 for this game.
Canberra Raiders 36-4
76 min: Sam Williams attempted a 40/20 kick but he was just on the 40 metre line so it was not ruled a 40/20 - So the Sharks will pack a scrum feed on their 10 metre line.
77 min: Another mistake from Todd Carney sees the ball handed over to the Raiders through a scrum feed on halfway
79 min: A great take from John Williams to leap through the air and take the kick clean shy of the goal line. The Sharks look like they will finish this game will the ball.
80 min: Reece Robinson takes the ball over the sideline as the siren sounds. FULL TIME at Toyota Stadium: Raiders 36 def. Sharks 4 in front of 12,139

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