Round 2 Sharks vs Dragon Review

Cronulla Sharks 16 defeated by the St. George Illawarra Dragons 20.

Just like previous years the crosstown derby between the Sharks and the Dragons delivered yet again.

With a massive southerly blowing (commemtators were saying its a 10 point breeze) at the ground the Sharks took full advantage of it in the first half with 66% possession after 15 minutes resulting in them scoring the first try and going out to an 8 nil lead.

By the half hour mark the Sharks were still completing at 100% with  17 from 17 and 65% possesson and eventually they were able to turn it into another four pointer and with a beautiful sideline conversion to take the score out to 14 nil.

Just before half-time the Dragons got their first real opportunity to get some points on the board and they didn't disappoint, with a Gareth Widdop kick resulting in Nene Macdonald possibly scoring the try of the season. Nene got the ball in mid air and with a third of his body over the touching goal line was able to plant the ball down millimetres inside the white stripe, with the sense to also lift his leg up so he never went out. Half time Sharks 14-4.

To start the second half the Cronulla Sharks reminded us all why you should play to the whistle after Ben Hunt drops the ball and luckily it's the tiniest bit of his boot and Tyson Frizell, the only person to continue playing on gathered the ball goes under the sticks and with the conversion the score moved onto 14-10 with more than 30 left on the clock.

The Dragons eventually level up with a back line play resulting in Euan Aitken going over on the right edge and with the sideline conversion the Dragons took the lead with a little over 20 minutes to go.

The Dragons choose the wrong play resulting in Feki getting an intercept and after Nightingale chasing him down, he laid in the ruck too long and as a result got 10 in the bin. The Sharks decide to take the penalty shot and went Townsend getting it over the scores were locked up again with 18 left on the clock.

The ball seem to turn the soap for 10 minutes as both sides shared error after error, but a penalty for being offside allowed Gareth Widdop to take a penalty shot and take back a 2 point lead for the Dragons while chewing the clock down whilst Nightingale was still in the sin bin. A kick out on the full and a dangerous lift allowed Gareth Widdop another penalty shot and in the blink of an eye the dragons had a 4 point lead again and Nightingale was back on the field.

The dragons were able to slowly wind down the clock and hold onto a 4 point lead resulting in the Cronulla coach walking away from the sideline with a little over a minute left in the match.

Key point:
The Dragons able to control the game whilst Nightingale was in the sin bin.
Also the Sharks completed 5 sets in the second half.

Boom's man of the match:
Nene McDonald, if he doesn't score that try the Dragons don't win the game.

Scoring timeline:
Cronulla Sharks 16
11' Townsend Penalty Goal
15' Bukuya Try
16' Townsend Conversion
27' Feki Try
29' Townsend Goal
62' Townsend Penalty Goal

St. George Illawarra Dragons 20
34' Macdonald Try
46' Frizell Try
46' Widdop Conversion
57' Aitken Try
58' Widdop Conversion
69' Widdop Penalty Goal
71' Widdop Penalty Goal



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