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Sharks let first half lead slip in Tigers loss

The Sharks have given up a six point half time lead in going down by 28-16 to the Wests Tigers in their round three clash at Bankwest Stadium. 

While showing glimpses of what they were capable of in the first half where they fought back from a 10-0 deficit to lead 16-10 at the interval, the Sharks failed to build any pressure or momentum in the second 40 as they slipped to a third loss to start their 2020 season. 

Under the new six again rule and with the one referee, it at times threatened to be a free-flowing game, however the lack of ball control drained them of energy late in the game when they needed it most

The Sharks began the game slowly and on the back of a Cronulla error and some sloppy ruck defence the Tigers would score first, Luke Brooks stepping inside before putting hooker Harry Grant over adjacent to the posts. 

Benji Marshall converted and it was 6-0 Tigers after the opening four minutes of the match. 

Another mistake, this time when the Sharks failed to gather a Marshall bomb and it was 10-0 to the Tigers Robert Jennings sliding over in the north-western corner of Bankwest Stadium. 

This time the conversion attempt was wide with the Tigers holding a handy lead just 10 minutes into the contest.  

The Sharks saw themselves under more pressure shortly after but defended their line and forced an error, with their efforts at one end rewarded at the other when Josh Dugan touched down after a clever Wade Graham grubber kick. 

It was only four minutes later and Dugan crossed for a second time, on this occasion the Sharks centre brushed past the last line of defence to score in almost the identical spot to his first try. 

Johnson couldn't add the extras and 20 minutes in it was 10-all. 

It would take a further 15 minutes for either side to add to their tally and it would be the Sharks taking their first lead of the night, a well-worked play seeing fullback Will Kennedy slice through off an inside pass from Scott Sorensen. 

The simply conversion from Johnson put the Sharks up by six, with the teams going to the break with the score at 16-10 to the Cronulla side. 

The Sharks controlled most of the early going in the second period but almost against the run of play the Tigers would narrow the margin through a Luke Garner try, following some good lead up work by David Nofoaluma. 

The relatively simple conversion attempt from Marshall was waved away and 55 minutes into the match it was anyones games at 16-14 Sharks.

A Sharks error, then a stripping penalty gave Marshall the opportunity to level the scores and when his kick at goal was successful the score were level once more at 16-all with still 19 minutes left on the clock. 

The game then tipped in the Tigers favour, firstly when a Marshall line break earned his team a repeat set, then when Nofoaluma busted through some ordinary Sharks defence on the drop out return to score in the corner. 

Marshall was off-target with his kick but his team had their noses in front at 20-16 with 15 minute of the match to go, an advantage they would carry through until the full time siren.  

A late Josh Aloiai try, Moses Mybe conversion and penalty goal in the final five minutes completed the scoring in sealing the Tigers win and capping a disappointing night for the Sharks. 


Scoring summary 
4 mins - Harry Grant try, Benji Marshall goal - Tigers 6-0

8 mins - Robert Jennings try - Tigers 10-0

16 mins - Josh Dugan try, Shaun Johnson goal - Tigers 10-6
20 mins - Josh Dugan try - 10-all 

35 mins - Will Kennedy try, Shaun Johnson goal - 16-10
half time 

52 mins - Luke Garner try - Sharks 16-14
59 mins - Benji Marshall goal - 16-all
64 mins - David Nofoaluma try - Tigers 20-16
71 mins - Josh Aloiai try, Moses Mbye goal - Tigers 26-16

77 mins - Moses Mbye goal - Tigers 28-16

Josh Dugan 2, Will Kennedy tries, Shaun Johnson 2 goals
lost to 
Harry Grant, Robert Jennings, Luke Garner, David Nofoaluma, Josh ALoiai tries, Benji Marshall 2, Moses Mbye 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.