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Baby Broncos snatch a win at the death

The Sharks have gone down in a heartbreaker, beaten 24-22 by the Broncos in their round 16 clash at PointsBet Stadium. 

Despite scoring five tries to four, it was a 76th minute Brisbane try and the subsequent conversion that tipped the result in the Broncos favour, the loss third in a row by just a two-point margin for the Cronulla side. 

Some enterprising backline play in the second half appeared to set the Sharks on course for a win, but the young Brisbane team, featuring four debutantes, came home the stronger in stealing the game in the dying minutes. 

The loss for the Sharks now adds extra importance to their trip to Melbourne to face the Storm next Saturday on a night where Cameron Smith celebrates his 400th NRL game. 

While the Sharks competed hard and were well and truly in the arm wrestle early, it was a touch of brilliance from the Broncos which saw the first points posted, rookie winger Xavier Coates leaping high over his opposite number to score a spectacular try. 

Kotini Staggs converted and it was 6-0 to Brisbane after eight minutes. 

The Sharks responded soon after, following some enterprising attacking play they spread both the Broncos defence and the ball wide and it was Josh Dugan on the end of the passing movement, the centre touching down wide out. 

Chad Townsend could convert from a wide angle and with 15 minutes gone it was 6-4 to the visitors. 

With their tails up a Josh Morris line break put the Sharks on the attack and four tackles later Townsend would win the race to his own grubber kick after Brisbane centre Staggs mishandled. 

Again the kick at goal was waved away however the Sharks had their noses in front at 8-6 midway through the first half. 

The Sharks dodged a bullet with a possible second try to Coates was denied by the video referee, but they weren't so lucky the next time, failing to dive on a loose ball in the in goal, with Tevita Pangai touching down for the Broncos second try. 

Staggs kicked the simple conversion and it was 12-8 Brisbane late in the first period, a lead they would hold until the half time break. 

The second half started in positive fashion for the Sharks, Josh Morris making something out of nothing before planting the ball down wide out to level the scores, they the experienced outside back was in the play again shortly after to cross for his second of the afternoon. 

A Jack Williams line break, was backed up by Jayden Brailey, who found Matt Moylan in support, with Morris on the end of the movement to touch down wide out. 

Again the Sharks were unable to kick the conversion but they had their tails up at 16-12 with 30 minutes remaining. 

Not long after Morris would make it three, Kurt Capewell pushing through, finding Bronson Xerri, with Morris on the spot to score in the same spot as the previous. 

With Kyle Flanagan on at hooker for Brailey, the youngster earned the loudest cheer of the night when he kicked the goal to make it 22-10 in giving the Sharks a 10-point advantage. 

Back to back penalties, the first a dubious one for a play the ball indiscretion despite Broncos forward Matt Lodge lashing out with the boot, gifted them field position and soon after Payne Haas crashed over. 

The simple kick at goal narrow the margin to four with still 18 minutes of the match to go. 

The Sharks appeared to have done enough to claim the points, until a James Segeyaro grubber gave the Broncos a repeat set of six and it was a Jake Turpin try which would put his team in front for good. 

The Sharks finished the game without Paul Gallen and Matt Moylan, with both coming from the field with injuries that will be assessed prior to the game in Melbourne next weekend. 

Josh Morris 3, Josh Dugan, Chad Townsend tries Kyle Flanagan goal
Lost to
Xavier Coates, Tevita Pangai, Jake Turpin, Payne Haas tries, Kotoni Staggs 4 goals

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.