NRL match preview: Cronulla Sharks vs Wests Tigers

Date: Saturday 17th May
Venue: Remondis Stadium
Kick-off: 5.30pm

Sharks: Michael Gordon, Sosaia Feki, Blake Ayshford, Ricky Leutele, Beau Ryan, Luke Lewis, Jeff Robson, Sam Tagataese, John Morris, Bryce Gibbs, Anthony Tupou, Wade Graham, Paul Gallen (c). Interchange: Isaac De Gois, Chris Heighington, Tinirau Arona, Siosaia Vave, Michael Lichaa, David Fifita, Jonathan Wright

Tigers: Kurtis Rowe, David Nofoaluma, Tim Simona, Chris Lawrence, Pat Richards, Braith Anasta, Luke Brooks, Aaron Woods, Robbie Farah (c), Keith Galloway, Cory Paterson, Bodene Thompson, Adam Blair. Interchange: Martin Taupau, Ava Seumanufagai, Blake Austin, Sauaso Sue


A 42-24 loss to the Parramatta Eels on Monday night added to the list of poor displays by the Sharks in 2014 and as they head back to Remondis Stadium to take on the Wests Tigers, this match becomes a must win for the struggling black, white and blue.

Cronulla’s experiment of playing Luke Lewis at five-eighth was unsuccessful last weekend however coach Peter Sharp has named Lewis at 6 for this crucial match. The possible early return of Todd Carney would give the Sharks the attacking confidence they have lacked in the star five-eighth absence.

Whether Todd Carney or Luke Lewis takes the field in the number 6 jersey, the Sharks face a massive challenge as they take on a Tigers halves pairing that features both experience in Braith Anasta and youth in Luke Brooks.

A great deal of the Tigers success is due to their halves and with rising star Blake Austin set to add impact off the bench for Wests, Cronulla will need to be at both their attacking at defensive best if they are to be competitive against a Tigers side looking to get back to winning ways.

Sharks by 8.

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