KEY MATCH-UPS | Sharks v Manly
THE CENTRES | Ricky Leutele v Jamie Lyon
Sharks centre Ricky Leutele will tonight square off with Manly skipper Jamie Lyon, having got the better of his opposite number in the form of Josh Dugan last Sunday.
Leutele’s defence was solid as per, with the centre rewarded for his efforts with a try at the death in the Derby.
Lyon meanwhile is yet to cross for a try this season, having done so on just four occasions across 17 matches in 2015.
Lyon’s combination with Tom Trbojevic on Manly’s right flank will no doubt test the Leutele/Feki defence.
Leutele will remain confident of defusing the threat though, having missed just one tackle inside the opening two rounds.
Fast fact: Jamie Lyon has twice scored 20 points in a match versus the Sharks.
THE BACK-ROWERS | Luke Lewis v Lewis Brown
Luke Lewis fronts up against Kiwi Lewis Brown in a battle of the big boys on the edges.
Lewis turned in a trademark performance last Sunday versus the Dragons, in churning out numbers both in attack and defence that left everyone well aware that there’s life in the legs, still.
Brown scored a try in his side’s defeat last week at Leichardt, after playing the full 80 minutes at Brookvale in Round 1 versus the Bulldogs.
Watch for Chad Townsend to take even more control of the Sharks attack this week, with Lewis a key figure in the side’s work going forward, down the right channel.
Fast fact: Lewis Brown has tasted defeat in four of his last five matches versus the Sharks
THE INTERCHANGE | David Fifita v Brenton Lawrence
Coming off the interchange last weekend, David Fifita proved a tough task for the Dragons, running for 99 metres from his 12 carries, producing 15 tackles to boot.
Fifita’s showing backed up the efforts of his brother Andrew, who too had a huge game in front of the Cronulla faithful.
David’s efforts earned him more minutes on the field last week, and he’ll no doubt be looking and hoping for much of the same tonight.
Brenton Lawrence returned to the Manly fold last weekend, and he too produced big numbers with limited minutes on the paddock.
The impact of both men off the bench could prove decisive tonight, in a hard-fought affair where metres up the middle will be at a premium.
Fast fact: David Fifita’s 39 minutes last weekend was his second most in a single match across his career (Most: 59 minutes v Cowboys Rnd 16, 2015)