NRL Grand Final week begins
2 hours ago | LeagueUnlimited Media
Cronulla Sharks won back-to-back games at Brookvale for the first time in their 20-14 over Manly Sea Eagles in front of 10,358 fans on Sunday afternoon.
The result was built on a wonderful first half from the Sharks. The visitors led 14-nil headed into the break and held off the late surge from the Sea Eagles to rebound from their thrashing at Magic Round.
In this battle of the beaches, it was the shire side which started on the front foot. They were making metres at will from the kick-off and Royce Hunt strolled over from close range to make it 6-0 in the ninth minute.
It was all Sharks in the opening exchanges. They fought off some Sea Eagles attack before they earnt the whistle. Nicho Hynes brought out the tee and landed the penalty goal which extended their advantage to 8-0.
The Sharks were swimming with the tide in the first half hour. They added their second try from a simple quick hands play on the right side. It ended with Sione Katoa flashing over the tryline and making it 14-0.
Manly Sea Eagles did find some joy in a first half which was littered with errors and lackluster attack. They earnt a penalty right on the half-time whistle but opted to let the centurion Reuben Garrick kick the goal. He saluted and made it 14-2 at the break.
Coming out of the break, Cronulla felt just fine. They were smooth as butter from the distance with Briton Nikora breaking free on the wing before he passed it inside for Jesse Ramien to dive over to give them an 18 point lead.
It looked like it wasn't going to be the Sea Eagles day, month or even their year. They attacked the line for six straight sets but it felt like the Sharks defense was going to hold firm and take the spoils.
They did find a breakthrough after the hour mark. They got into their rhythm and send the ball towards the left and it was the milestone man again, Garrick who walked over untouched to make it 20-8 and set up a grandstand finish.
Manly Sea Eagles double dipped and got themselves back within six. Lachlan Croker snuck over from close range despite it needing to be checked from the bunker but that four-pointer brought the Brookvale crowd into the contest.
Sharks were able to hold onto the two points and make it the first time, they have picked up back-to-back wins at Brookvale Oval in their club history and sees them move back into the top four of the NRL Premiership.
Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles 14 - Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks 20
Venue: 4 Pines Park, Brookvale / Cammeraygal
Halftime Score: Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles 2 Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks 14
LeagueUnlimited.com Players of the Match:
3 points - Nicho Hynes
2 points - Briton Nikora
1 points - Taniela Paseka
MANLY-WARRINGAH SEA EAGLES (14)
Tries: Reuben Garrick, Lachlan Croker
Two Point Field Goals:
Conversions: Reuben Garrick (2/2)
Penalty Goals: Reuben Garrick (1/1)
CRONULLA-SUTHERLAND SHARKS (20)
Tries: Royce Hunt, Sione Katoa, Jesse Ramien
Two Point Field Goals:
Conversions: Nicho Hynes (3/3)
Penalty Goals: Nicho Hynes (1/1)