TEAM FORM GUIDE
The Cronulla Sharks played their first match of 2019 against the Newcastle Knights, who they won their trial against just two weeks prior. The Sharks walked away from their round one match with plenty to work on after losing by six points. Cronulla finished the game with a 62 per cent completion rate, which is something that needs to be improved immediately for them to have a successful 2019.
Gold Coast Titans
The Gold Coast Titans hosted the Canberra Raiders last Sunday evening and were disappointingly defeated by 21 points. The Raiders scored their first points in the 20th minute and went on to score plenty more, leaving the Titans with no opportunities to muster a comeback. The Titans were without their halves partnership with both Ash Taylor and Tyrone Roberts succumbing to injury during their loss.
Head coach John Morris made no changes to the line up from the Sharks’ round one clash against the Knights in anticipation for their first home game of the season.
This will be a milestone game for captain Paul Gallen, who will match Andrew Ettingshausen’s record of 328 games for the club.
1. Matt Moylan, 2. Sosaia Feki, 3. Josh Dugan, 4. Josh Morris, 5. Sione Katoa, 6. Shaun Johnson, 7. Chad Townsend, 8. Andrew Fifita, 9. Jayden Brailey, 10. Matt Prior, 11. Briton Nikora, 12. Kurt Capewell, 13. Paul Gallen, 14. Blayke Brailey, 15. Jayson Bukuya, 16. Aaron Woods, 17. Jack Williams, 18. Scott Sorensen, 19. Kyle Flanagan, 20. Bronson Xerri, 21. Braden Uele
Gold Coast Titans
The Gold Coast Titans will be without halves partnership Taylor and Roberts after suffering injuries in the round one clash. Ryley Jacks is making his Titans debut, while Alexander Brimson and Anthony Don are named in the starting line up. Phillip Sami has been moved to the interchange bench, and Dale Copley has been taken out of the 17 due to a recurring calf complaint.
1. Michael Gordon, 2. Anthony Don, 3. Tyrone Peachey, 4. Brian Kelly, 5. Brenko Lee, 6. Alexander Brimson, 7. Ryley Jacks, 8. Jarrod Wallace, 9. Nathan Peats, 10. Shannon Boyd, 11. Kevin Proctor, 12. Ryan James, 13. Jai Arrow, 14. Phillip Sami, 15. Moeaki Fotuaika, 16. Max King, 17. Bryce Cartwright, 18. Mitch Rein, 19. Jai Whitbread, 20. Leilani Latu, 21. Jesse Arthars.
HEAD TO HEAD
The Sharks will play their first home game of 2019 against the Gold Coast Titans on Saturday afternoon, with both sides looking for a victory after being defeated by their respective competition in round one. Both the Sharks and the Titans will be looking for a win in order to begin gaining momentum for the rest of the season.
Cronulla is still without Wade Graham, but will not be missing anyone who was named to play in round one. The Titans have had to make a handful of changes due to injuries to their halves partnership, which could prove to be difficult for them.
Since 2011, the Sharks and Titans have met 14 times, with the Sharks winning seven of these encounters, including the most recent one, where they won by a field goal in the final minute. The Titans have won six and there was a draw late in 2016. There is no dominant team in the history between these two, which will hopefully make for an interesting match on Saturday afternoon.
A fair amount of attention will be on the halves partnerships from both clubs. The Titans have a fresh partnership as a result of injuries to both their six and seven in their loss to the Raiders. The Sharks have been working on their halves partnership throughout the pre-season, however, still, have a lot of work ahead of them in order to be a strong duo for the club.
Brimson and Jacks will be taking to the field in the six and seven for the Titans, and will hopefully have a strong game together for their club. Shaun Johnson and Chad Townsend weren’t at their strongest last weekend, and have a lot to prove. Both pairings have the potential to be crucial elements of their teams’ line ups and will hopefully put on strong performances to help get their respective sides their first wins of the season.
THE IMPORTANT DETAILS
Date: Saturday, March 23
Venue: Shark Park
Kick-Off: 3:00 PM
WHO WILL WIN?
It will be an interesting match between the Titans and the Sharks on Saturday afternoon, both desperate to get their first win of the season. The injuries to the Titans are likely to be a major factor in the match.
Sharks by 4.