2024 NRL: Round 17 Preview, Bulldogs Vs Sharks

Check out the match preview and prediction for the round 17 clash between the Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs and the Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks.



Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs Vs Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks
Venue: Accor Stadium, Sydney
Date: Friday 28 June, 8:00pm AEST


Bulldogs: 1. Blake Taaffe, 2. Blake Wilson, 3. Bronson Xerri, 4. Jacob Kiraz, 5. Jeral Skelton, 6. Matt Burton, 7. Toby Sexton, 8. Max King, 9. Reed Mahoney, 10. Samuel Hughes, 11. Viliame Kikau, 12. Jaeman Salmon, 13. Bailey Hayward, 14. Jake Turpin, 15. Josh Curran, 16. Kurtis Morrin, 17. Lipoi Hopoi, 19. Jacob Preston, 20. Drew Hutchison, 21. Eli Clark, 22. Harry Hayes, 23. Stephen Crichton

Sharks: 1. William Kennedy, 2. Sione Katoa, 3. Jesse Ramien, 4. Kayal Iro, 5. Ronaldo Mulitalo, 6. Braydon Trindall, 7. Nicho Hynes, 8. Toby Rudolf, 9. Blayke Brailey, 10. Oregon Kaufusi, 11. Briton Nikora, 12. Siosifa Talakai, 13. Cameron McInnes, 14. Jack Williams, 15. Royce Hunt, 16. Thomas Hazelton, 17. Tuku Hau Tapuha, 18. Daniel Atkinson, 19. Jesse Colquhoun, 20. Mawene Hiroti, 21. Teig Wilton, 22. Jayden Berrell

Referee: Gerard Sutton

Embed from Getty Images


Kicking off Round 17 at Accor Stadium is an intriguing clash between the Bulldogs and Sharks. The Sharks come into this game rested after their Round 16 bye, while the Bulldogs suffered a 26-8 defeat at the hands of the Roosters in torrential conditions at Gosford.

For the Bulldogs, Connor Tracey is out with a concussion he suffered last week, with Blake Taafe taking his place at fullback. Bronson Xerri returns at centre with Drew Hutchison dropped out of the 17. Stephen Crichton has been named in the reserves and will be a potential late inclusion on gameday, pending how he recovers from Origin. Jacob Preston is named as 18th man as he looks to return from a foot injury that ruled him out last week.

The Bulldogs will be looking for a bounce back performance this week after they were taught a lesson in wet weather football by the Roosters last week. The experiment of shifting Matt Burton to centre last week didn’t pay off and limited the potency of their attack. If they’re going to take down the Sharks, they’ll need to restore the combination Burton struck up with Viliame Kikau prior to their Round 15 bye, which helped carry them to three straight wins. However, recent head-to-head matchups are stacked against the Bulldogs. They’ve lost their past six matches against the Sharks, with an average losing margin of almost 20 points.

For the Sharks, just one change to their lineup with Tuku Hau Tapuha replacing Braden Hamlin-Uele on the bench.

This is an important matchup for the Sharks if they want to stay in touch with the Storm and Panthers at the top of the ladder. The fact Nicho Hynes missed out on Origin selection means he can re-focus on his form at the Sharks without the extra pressure of Origin. With no Connor Tracey and potentially no Stephen Crichton, the Sharks will be looking to attack Blake Taafe with their kicking game and spread the ball to the less experienced edges of the Bulldogs.

This is the second time these two sides have played this year, with the first clash in Round 2 won by the Sharks 25-6 at PointsBet Stadium.

Head-to-head stats can be found at Number Crunch Stats.


Check out all the NRL Predictions here.

Sharks by 10 points.

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Comments (1)

  1. A must win for Sharks to maintain top 4. Fully geared.

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