Craig Fitzgibbon’s men were outplayed by a clinical Brisbane Broncos outfit on Saturday night going down 20 points to 12 at PointsBet Stadium.
Melbourne, meanwhile, were blown off the park by a second-half, Cowboys avalanche in Townsville with Todd Payten’s squad coming away with a stunning 45-20 win.
The Sharks have been boosted by the return of Cameron McInnes who has been out since Round 11 with a hand fracture.
Thomas Hazelton drops out of the 17 to accommodate the return of McInnes.
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Ronaldo Mulitalo, Blayke Brailey, and Braden Hamlin-Uele are all free to play after escaping bans for incidents that occurred in the side’s loss to Brisbane
The Storm will be without star centre Justin Olam due to a concussion with Grant Anderson coming into the run-on side and Tariq Sims joining the interchange.
The two last met in Round 17 last season in the Shire when the Sharks proved too strong for a Storm outfit sans Cameron Munster and Harry Grant, coming away with a convincing 28-6 win thanks to a Jesse Ramien hat-trick.
The result broke Melbourne’s five-game winning streak against the Sharks which had extended back to mid-2019.
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The Sharks have won only twice at Melbourne’s AAMI Park with the Storm having won the last four meetings there and 11 of 13 overall.
The two sides have a rivalry stemming back to the 2016 Grand Final which laid the foundation for several fiery clashes over the years including the infamous Cameron Smith sin-bin game in early-2018.
Both sides enter the clash with seven wins and five losses with for-and-against difference the only thing separating them on the ladder.
Much has been made of the Sharks’ inability to beat fellow top eight sides this season with Fitzgibbon’s men none-from-five versus their top eight counterparts this season.
Sunday afternoon firms as a prime opportunity to shift the narrative against a Melbourne side that has enjoyed a largely up-and-down season.
The Storm enter the clash as favourites with bookmakers expecting Cronulla’s struggles in the Victorian capital to continue.
Kick-off: Sunday 11 June (4:05pm), AAMI Park
Sharks squad: 1. Kennedy; 2. Katoa; 3. Ramien; 4. Talakai; 5. Mulitalo; 6. Moylan; 7. Hynes; 8. Kaufusi; 9. Brailey; 10. Hunt; 11. Nikora; 12. Wilton; 13. Finucane (c); 14. McInnes; 15. Graham; 16. Williams; 17. Hamlin-Uele; 18. Trindall; 19. Tracey; 20. Hazelton; 21. Atkinson; 22. Colquhoun
Storm squad: 1. Meaney; 2. Warbrick; 3. Smith; 4. Anderson; 5. Coates; 6. Munster; 7. Hughes; 8. Kamikamica; 9. Grant; 10. Welch (c); 11. Loiero; 12. Katoa; 13. King; 14. Garlick; 15. Pene; 16. Asofa-Solomona; 17. Sims; 18. Fa'alogo; 19. Seve; 20. Bradley; 21. Wishart; 22. Eisenhuth
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