Full Time
5:30pm Sat August 13, 2022
Round 22 - Scully Park, Tamworth

Match Overview

Cronulla has shown their bite in this season's Telstra Premiership, cementing their top 4 position by thrashing the Tigers by 24 points as the NRL returned to Tamworth this evening for the first time since 2020.

It was a fast start for the Sharks in this one as they're desperate to stay in the race for the top four. Nicho Hynes was heavily involved when a clever set play saw the Cronulla halfback put boot to ball and Lachie Miller was there to pounce and give the Sharks an early advantage.

Five minutes later, the Tigers were made to pay for some poor discipline when Braidon Trindall produced an inch perfect grubber and Matt Ikuvalu beat Daine Laurie to the ball. All of a sudden, the Sharks were beating the clock with an early 12-0 advantage. However, an ill-timed error from Miller gave the Tigers some attacking footy. Fa'amanu Brown caught the Sharks middle napping and snuck over to score although replays couldn't overturn the on-field decision of a try and the margin was cut in half.

However, a Hynes bomb was spilled by Laurie and the Sharks were immediately back on the attack. Royce Hunt steamrolled his way onto the football and the late inclusion crashed over the top of Laurie to re-establish a twelve point margin. Off the very next set, it was a short side raid from Hynes, Jesse Ramien and Miller. The former Aussie sevens star was able to kick it back on the inside and Kade Dykes was jolly on the spot to pick up his first NRL try and the Sharks got out to an 18 point lead. The Tigers were able to stem the bleeding and hang in the contest, but a lazy high shot from Tyrone Peachey gave Hynes a gift two points and a 20 point half-time advantage.

The second half began with a strong attacking chance from the visitors, but Brett Kimmorley's men were able to hang in there and stop the Shark attack. But, their attack left a lot to be desired and eventually the Sharks were able to bite their way through for another try. It was a clever inside ball from Blayke Brailey to Braden Hamlin-Uele and the big man was able to extend the Sharks lead.

However, the Sharks were their own worst enemy and off a cheap error, Fonua Pole was able to offload to a flying Luke Garner to cross for the Tigers' second of the evening and reduce the margin once more. However, that was short lived when another mistake from Brent Naden saw the Sharks immediately shift it to the right which saw Briton Nikora link up with Ramien to extend the margin back out to 24 points. It wasn't all plain sailing for the visitors with Teig Wilton sin binned for a late hit on Laurie, it nearly came to bite them when Naden thought he crashed over, but the Bunker spotted an obstruction and revoked the try. But the result was never in doubt and the Sharks rolled on convincing winners in the final analysis. 

The Sharks continue to showcase their improvement under Craig Fitzgibbon this season and with a fairly easy run home, the Sharks will be able to continue to build going into the business end. The Tigers' run doesn't get much easier taking on the Roosters next Saturday in the Roosters final home match at the SCG.

3. Nicho Hynes

2. Royce Hunt

1. Kade Dykes