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17 Aug 2018 by Ash Wheldon

2018 NRL – Cronulla Sutherland Sharks vs North Queensland Cowboys Preview

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AT A GLANCE

When? Saturday 18th August, 10:35 (UK)

Where? Southern Cross Group Stadium

What channel is it on? UK - Sky Sports Arena
Australia - Nine Network, Foxtel, LIVE PASS

Where can I stream the match? UK - Sky Sports subscribers can stream the match online via Sky Go
Australia - https://www.telstra.com.au/tv-movies-music/sports-offer

Are tickets still available? http://premier.ticketek.com.au/shows/Show.aspx?sh=SHA2318

THE STATISTICS

THE LOWDOWN

SHARKS

Head Coach: Shane Flanagan

Starting 13: Holmes, Feki, Ramien, Leutele, Dugan, Moylan, Townsend, Fifita, Brailey, Prior, Lewis, Sorensen, Gallen – Interchanges: Capewell, Segeyaro, Woods, Bukuya – Reserves: Paulo, Seumanufagai, Graham, Katoa

Unavailable: Jack Williams

  • Cronulla produced a magnificent effort to claim a win over Melbourne last week. The Sharks withstood plenty of pressure on their line to hold on and earn a 14-17 victory.

  • Wade Graham is out with a knee injury but has been named amongst the reserves and could be a late inclusion. Scott Sorensen starts in the second row with Kurt Capewell coming onto the bench.

  • The Sharks snapped their two-game losing streak with last week’s win to give them some breathing room in the play-offs. The Sharks occupy sixth spot and could still break into the top 4 if results go their way.

COWBOYS

Head Coach: Paul Green

Starting 13: Martin, Feldt, O’Neill, Linnett, Gela-Mosby, Clifford, Thurston, Bolton, Granville, McLean, Cooper, Hess, Asiata – Interchanges: Hampton, Molo, Jensen, Lowe – Reserves: Tuala, Fensom

Unavailable: Josh Chudleigh, Michael Morgan, Sam Hoare, Jason Taumalolo, Matt Scott

  • North Queensland produced a great display to overcome Brisbane last week. The Cowboys were tested throughout but showed great character to fight back and score three unanswered tries to end the game and snatch a 34-30 win late on.

  • Matt Scott is a late withdrawal so Scott Bolton starts at prop with Ethan Lowe coming onto the bench. John Asiata replaces the suspended Jason Taumalolo at lock with Francis Molo promoted to the 17.

  • Despite the Cowboys’ win last week, they still dropped to the foot of the NRL ladder after the Eels claimed a big win to leapfrog them on points difference.

THE PREDICTION

North Queensland face a tough task to avoid the wooden spoon after falling to last place on the ladder, even though they beat Brisbane last week. The Cowboys dropped a place on points difference and now face a difficult game against Cronulla with star man Jason Taumalolo out through suspension. The Sharks will fancy their chances of breaking into the top 4 after last week’s impressive win over the Storm, especially as they face the now bottom-placed side in the NRL. Taumalolo’s importance cannot be understated and his loss will be too difficult to overcome with the Sharks having too much for them.

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