Category: Sharks


GUILTY! The Judiciary Fallout

The NRL judiciary has been given the night off this week with all six players charged by the match review committee taking the early guilty plea on Tuesday. Manly co-captain Jason King, Canberra prop Brett White, Warriors five-eighth James Maloney and Cronulla hooker Paul Aiton will all sit out one game, while Matt Bowen and Luke Walsh are both free to play. King’s absence, for a knee lift in last weekend’s loss to Melbourne, leaves the Sea Eagles without a skipper with Jamie Lyon out for a month with a hamstring strain. White’s absence has opened the door for Josh Miller to come into Canberra’s squad, while young gun Isaac John replaces Maloney in the Warriors No.6 jumper.

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The NRL Match-Review committee today laid six charges from the weekend games; Brett White, Jason King, Matt Bowen, James Maloney, Paul Aiton and Luke Walsh all having cases to answer. Sharks Paul Aiton is facing two weeks on the sidelines after he was charged with an alleged heat butt on Raiders Joel Thompson. Aiton will miss one week if he pleads guilty, or could face two weeks if he fights the charge and loses. Canberra’s Brett White and Manly’s Jason King could both miss a week of football after being charged with Grade 1 dangerous contact for lifting knees while running with the ball. Matt Bowen is facing a Grade 1 dangerous contact charge for sliding in with the feet on Broncos Matt Gillett, but will avoid suspension if he takes the early guilty plea. Warriors five-eighth James Maloney could miss his side’s clash with the Wests Tigers after he was charged for dangerous contact on Jarryd Hayne. Panthers halfback Luke Walsh has been charged with a high tackle on Knights James McManus, but will not miss the Round 2 clash with Parramatta. Continue reading

Cowboys fullback Matt Bowen will today come under scrutiny from the NRL match review committee for lashing out with his foot to try and stop a try in Friday night’s 16-14 defeat of the Broncos. Bowen was not put on report, but the 56th minute incident was flagged for review after he twice tried to use his boot to stop Brisbane utility Matt Gillett grounding the ball. Gillett managed to get across the tryline, but was penalised for a double movement in a crucial call by match officials as the Broncos were trailing 16-10 at the time. The incident is one of several that will be studied closely today by the NRL match review panel to determine whether contact was made, including allegations of lifting knees against Manly prop Jason King and Canberra’s Brett White. Warriors halfback James Maloney also faces an anxious wait to learn whether he is charged over an early tackle on Parramatta star Jarryd Hayne while he was fielding a kick during the Eels 24-18 win at Eden Park on Saturday night. Continue reading

Raiders thrash Sharks in eventful match

Canberra thrashed hapless Cronulla 40-12 in a seven-try NRL rout at Canberra Stadium.The Sharks were unable to stop the Raiders from piling on the points as the Green Machine that rolled into the 2010 finals continued from where they left off last year. Compounding the Sharks’s woes was the sending off of hooker Paul Aiton in the 74th minute for headbutting Raiders centre Joel Thompson. Meanwhile, in a major surprise, the Newcastle Knights scored seven tries against a poor Penrith at Penrith Stadium.Back in Canberra, the Raiders – already without Josh Dugan – did suffered a couple of setbacks. Captain Alan Tongue injured an AC joint after a shoulder charge on Cronulla prop Kade Snowden in the opening minutes and took no further part in the match, while prop Brett White was placed on report for knee lifting. Continue reading

Dugan and Orford out

Canberra will face an early test of their depth when they head into Sunday’s round one NRL clash with Cronulla minus big names Josh Dugan and Matt Orford. Rising star Dugan has a calf injury and failed to train on Saturday, while veteran halfback Orford is a definite non-starter with a groin problem. Dugan is extremely doubtful and his place at fullback will be taken by David Milne. Nineteen-year-old half Sam Williams comes into the squad for Orford. Whether the 2010 Toyota Cup halfback of the year starts remains to be seen with hooker Alan Tongue a strong chance of taking over the playmaking duties. Star signing Orford, 32, has been hampered during pre-season with a groin strain and has not been able to recover in time to face the Sharks. The Raiders are already without former Test five-eighth Terry Campese until midseason after a knee reconstruction, his place taken by Josh McCrone. Continue reading

Injuries to upset Raiders v Sharks opener

There’s as much uncertainty over the Cronulla Sharks and Canberra Raiders sides as there is about Prime Minister Julia Gillard’s popularity right now. At least in the national capital on Sunday, supporters and rivals won’t have to wait long for a decision. Up to seven players named in the two extended squads by respective coaches Shane Flanagan and David Furner, are in some doubt for the 2pm game at Canberra Stadium. The Sharks have centre Dean Collis and forward Anthony Tupou (leg injuries) undergoing constant treatment this week, but they’ve been named in the starting 13, along with a six-man bench. The Raiders new half recruit, Matt Orford, and former Sharks winger Blake Ferguson are among five doubtfuls. Continue reading

Sharks have confidence in Kelly

In terms of an individual performance, it was just about a career killer. Thrust into an NRL starting debut, 19-year-old Albert Kelly, a cousin of Greg Inglis, endured a forgettable occasion. In a 30-8 defeat by South Sydney at Toyota Stadium last March, Kelly, picked by then Cronulla coach Ricky Stuart at fullback, was haunted by the high ball, conceding two tries with cringe-inducing mistakes and looking thoroughly lost and out of his depth thereafter. Yet a deflated Stuart, entering his infuriating final months with the Sharks, would only utter positive remarks about the teenager in the aftermath. ”What I am wishing is I had another 16 of him. He is going to be a real player that kid,” he said. Stuart is gone but his attitude then is reflective of how Kelly is viewed in the Sutherland Shire. Continue reading

1. Anthony Mitchell (Eels) – The Eels have struggled to find a regular dummy-half in recent years but with the emergence of 21-year-old Anthony Mitchell in late 2010 their search could soon be over. The highly-rated young hooker boasts all the skills – lightning service, a crisp passing game and speed off the mark. Likely to be part of a three-man rotation for the Eels this year, he will battle for the No.9 jersey with Matt Keating and new arrival Casey McGuire but the general consensus is that the hooking spot will become his alone in the long term. Mitchell played three games for the Eels at the back end of the 2010 season, scoring two tries, and was selected in the Indigenous All Stars side earlier this year.

2. Siuatonga Likiliki (Knights) – Boasting one of the greatest names in rugby league history – right up there with the likes of former Bronco Steele Retchless and South Sydney’s Bronco Djura – Siuatonga Likiliki made a name for himself playing for the Warriors’ premiership-winning Toyota Cup side last season when he scored 19 tries in 25 games. Now with Newcastle, the 20-year-old speedster already has tongues wagging in the Hunter where he will join Akuila Uate in a lightning-fast backline. A Junior Kiwis representative in 2010, Likiliki was named in both the 2009 and 2010 Toyota Cup Team of the Year. Continue reading

Kelly to get nod as Sharks No.7

Young gun Albert Kelly is set to start at halfback for Cronulla ahead of former rookie of the year Tim Smith when the club kicks off their NRL season in Canberra on Sunday week.

Kelly looks to have won the pre-season battle to partner ex-Penrith five-eighth Wade Graham in the halves as the Sharks look to lift themselves into top eight contenders.

The 19-year-old cousin of superstar Greg Inglis made a soul-destroying debut at fullback in round one last year before going on to play just five first grade games.

But training back at his preferred position he has impressed coach Shane Flanagan and is likely to get the nod ahead of the inconsistent Smith when the Sharks’ first side of 2011 is named.

“Wado’s (Graham’s) going pretty good, I think we’ve just got to find him a permanent partner, that’s the hard thing,” captain Paul Gallen said. Continue reading

The match review committee examined three other  incidents from the weekend’s trials.

Sydney Roosters forward Nate Myles was cleared of a lifting tackle on Wests Tigers back Wade McKinnon, while Cronulla recruit Jeremy Smith was deemed not to have tripped Newcastle’s Mark Taufua.

Penrith half Luke Walsh’s sickening hit on Parramatta’s Daniel Mortimer, which also sparked a melee, was deemed legitimate.

Gold Coast youngster Ryan James will need to wait another day to know whether he faces a second pre-season suspension after he was placed on report in the trial against North Queensland.

Footage of the Titans-Cowboys match will not be available until Tuesday.