Year in Review 2017: Cronulla Sharks

2017 marked the year in which the Cronulla Sharks tried to go back to back. A feat in which had not been done since the 1992-1993 seasons which was done by the Brisbane Broncos.

A few teams had come close, The Cowboys came 1 game short in 2016 after winning the 2015 Grand Final and the Melbourne Storm would have done it, if it wasn't for the last minute upset by the Cronulla Sharks in 2016.

2017 finished a little prematurely for the Sharks after they went down in Extra Time to the North Queensland Cowboys in the first round of finals.

2017 like many teams had it's ups and it's downs for the Sharks, What went wrong? Well the stats in attack compared between 2016 and 2017 were vastly different. In 2016 the Sharks had 59 Try assists and 490 points in 2017 compared to when they won the Comp in 2016 with 89 Try assists and 642 total points. To add to this, The Sharks had Ben Barber at fullback in 2016 who added 18 try assists and another 18 linebreaks which compared to 2017 they really would have loved to have.

But to go with these negatives there are some positives that go with them, So what went right? They didn't have a good record at home this past season however on the road they were nearly unbeatable going 10-2. They had a very solid scramble defence as they conceded the second fewest tries despite having the fourth most missed tackles.

To go with this their forwards ran for a total of 40,719 meters which was the most of any club, led at the helm of skipper Paul Gallen with 4582 metres to his name.

Now the Sharks have lost Star Centre Jack Bird (Brisbane Broncos) but in doing so didn't fail to replace him. They brought in New South Whales Blues Centre Josh Dugan to replace him and they conducted a player swap with the Penrith Panthers which saw the Sharks lose Five-Eighth in James Maloney but brought in Matt Moylan.

My prediction? Well I believe that the Sharks will still finish around the 4th-5th place on the ladder. Teams have worked out how to defend against them so the Sharks need to mix up how they play.



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