Tries: RICKY LEUTELE (12M) , WADE GRAHAM (42M) , SOSAIA FEKI (67M)
Goals: Michael Gordon, 3/3
Tries: BOYD CORDNER (18M) , JAMES MALONEY (23M), SHAUN KENNY-DOWALL (60M), SHAUN KENNY-DOWALL (71M)
Goals: James Maloney , 4/4
The Cronulla Sutherland Sharks were brave in defeat on Saturday night as they narrowly went down 24-18 to the Sydney Roosters at Remondis Stadium.
Sharks captain Paul Gallen was an unexpected inclusion into the starting squad as was talented youngster Michael Lichaa who replaced the injured Isaac De Gois.
The Sharks took the lead in the match as Ricky Leutele proved too strong for Sonny Bill Williams and raced away to score an outstanding individual try in just the 12th minute.
The Roosters crossed the line in the 18th minute through Boyd Cordner and a successful Maloney conversion saw them level the scores at 6-all.
The Roosters following try was overshadowed by controversy as it appeared Sharks five-eighth Todd Carney had been taken out before the Roosters raced away down field to claim a 4 pointer. Too the Sharks’ faithful’s disbelief the video referee awarded the try to the Roosters and this saw them take a vital 6 point lead at the half time break.
The Sharks came out firing in the second half and through Wade Graham locked the scores up again just 2 minutes into the half.
A Todd Carney cross field kick proved costly for the Sharks as Roosters winger Shaun Kenny-Dowall intercepted the kick to run the length of the field to score and put the Roosters back in front, 18-12.
A quick 20 metre tap taken by Jonathan Wright set up the Sharks equaliser as Sosaia Feki showed too much pace for Mitchell Pearce, sprinting away easily to level the scores once again, 18-all.
Some weak 5th tackle Sharks defence saw the Roosters land the killer blow in the 70th minute through Shaun Kenny-Dowall. who picked up his second of the night and sealed the win for the Roosters.
The Sharks fell agonisingly close to recording an unexpected win against the reigning premiers however they should take a lot of confidence into their next clash against the Panthers at Remondis Stadium.