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Competition - NRL Premiership Round. Round - Round 10. Teams - Newcastle Knights v Cronulla Sharks. Date - 15th of May 2016. Venue - Hunter Stadium, Broadmeadow NSW. Photographer - Paul Barkley.

You can’t teach speed.

Sure, leading sports trainers can send players through drills to have them heading in the right direction.

Others though, need no such instructions. It’s what they’re all about.

A Sharks side brimming with pace and talent tonight has a chance to race atop the NRL ladder after 11 rounds – albeit pending Monday night’s result between the Eels and Storm at Parramatta.

With a Bye next week, the Sharks will be out to surge to the front of the pack, such has been an incredible run of form and success inside the competition’s opening three months.

On a run of seven wins, and hopeful of extending that number to eight, the Sharks head into the Sea Eagles clash with an abundance of firepower and pace in their stocks – the depth arguably not seen before at the Club.

Sharks fullback Ben Barba has lit up the NRL stage once more in 2016, having rediscovered his nip and flare – but perhaps above all, his blistering turn of foot.

Barba, by his own admission, had slowed and lacked confidence through recurring injuries in recent seasons.

But now fit and firing as the NRL season begins to take shape, Barba looks once more at his confident – and happy – best, ready to again show his wheels against a Manly outfit that will be doing their all to keep him under wraps.

Wingers Sosaia Feki and Valentine Holmes continue to do what they do best, and at a rate of knots.

The wing duo crossed last week for a combined seven tries in the side’s big win over the Knights, and again are hungry for more points versus the Sea Eagles.

Jack Bird and Gerard Beale continue to play a vital role in the centres, and are said to be enjoying extra room and time created for them by the work of the nippy, crafty Sharks halves.

And that said, a player not before heralded for his speed, Chad Townsend has also showed this season that he can certainly motor.

Townsend’s dash – and dab – was on show for all to see, in the side’s Round 4 victory over the Storm at home.

Manly, though, too have some strike of their own.

Out to keep pace with the competition's leading sides, the Sea Eagles will need to call upon the work of their quick men to look to put points on the Sharks.

‘Turbo’ Tom Trbojevic left the Sharks clutching at air when the side’s met in Round 3, while fellow outside back Brayden Wiliame may do the same if afforded even only a half chance.

The battle of the edges has many a pundit and punter alike, salivating at the thought of seeing strike players in open spaces once more.

And the best place to see all the action tonight is at Southern Cross Group Stadium.

With tickets selling fast and another strong crowd anticipated tonight –  you better be quick.


Pre-purchase tickets to tonight’s Sharks versus Manly blockbuster HERE.

Acknowledgement of Country

Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks respect and honour the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.

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