Sharks stun high-flying Roosters 18-12 - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Sharks stun high-flying Roosters 18-12

By Ian McCullough 14/08/2010 07:26:59 AM Comments (0)

Lowly Cronulla inflicted a Friday the 13th nightmare on the high-flying Sydney Roosters with a shock 18-12 win in Friday's NRL encounter at Toyota Stadium.

Second-half tries from pint-sized fullback Nathan Gardner and Dean Collis secured a second win over the Roosters for the Sharks this season and put a major dent in Brian Smith's side's top-four aspirations.

It also handed coach Shane Flanagan his first win as coach since replacing Ricky Stuart last month and only the Sharks' third victory in their last 15 games.

Gardner, who scored one of the tries of the season in Cronulla's 42-18 win over the Roosters in round 13, was the difference as he danced past two tackles to score under the posts 12 minutes from time after Collis had touched down after the interval.

It was also a painful night for the former Parramatta junior, with Frank-Paul Nuuausala and Braith Anasta both placed on report for high shots on the 20-year-old.

The Sharks were worthy winners, defending magnificently and holding on in the final five minutes to give their long-suffering supporters something to cheer about following another miserable season.

Tries from Anasta and Shaun Kenny-Dowell gave the Roosters a 12-6 halftime lead after they dominated the opening 40 minutes.

The determined hosts withstood a wave of attacks with some brilliant defending and stunned the visitors, who sit in third spot on the ladder, when Ben Pomeroy intercepted a Mitchell Pearce pass to score five minutes before the break.

However, the Sharks failed to hold onto the ball from the restart and let the Roosters in with two tries in the final three minutes of the half.

Todd Carney and Pearce proved to be a constant menace for the home side with their slick interplay and Daniel Conn and Anthony Minichiello were both denied by some desperate Sharks goal-line defending in the first 10 minutes.

The Roosters should have opened the scoring in the 28th minute with winger Phil Graham making his entry for one of the misses of the season.

The former Canberra man somehow managed to juggle then spill the ball with no Sharks player in sight after Carney, who booted two 40-20s, created another gilt-edged opportunity.

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