Sharks respond with statement win over Rabbitohs

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The Sharks went close to a dream start via fill-in fullback Connor Tracey who slipped through a gap down the left edge and went within inches of grounding the ball in the corner but was ultimately denied.

Their first points instead came through Mawene Hiroti – who was called into the team late after Ronaldo Mulitalo was ruled out for a second consecutive week due to a jaw complaint – 17 minutes in after the left winger took in a Siosifa Talakai offload and stepped his way past several South Sydney defenders to come around and dive over.

The visitors went back-to-back via Sione Katoa who took advantage of a Jesse Ramien burst from inside his own half and subsequent offload by speeding into the backfield and standing up Latrell Mitchell thanks to some sharp feet.

Nicho Hynes piloted through a gift two points on the other side of the half-hour mark off an incorrect Rabbitohs restart to extend their lead beyond a pair of converted tries.

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Wade Graham went within inches of his first try of the season soon after but the officials ruled that the Rabbitohs defenders managed to deny him.

Alex Johnston went close to coming up with South Sydney’s opening points just shy of the intermission but was denied by some desperate Sharks cover.

Braydon Trindall snagged the first points the second half after the five-eighth poured through a yawning gap off a left-edge sweep play.

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Hiroti saved a certain Campbell Graham try minutes later after the South Sydney centre skied to collect a Cody Walker kick but was unable to get the ball to the turf.

Trindall notched the second double of his NRL career just shy of the hour-mark after proving a beneficiary of his own kick thanks to a twinkle-toed Hiroti effort and subsequent ricocheting Talakai grubber.

A Mitchell face ball sent Johnston over in trademark fashion for their eventual first points 63 minutes in.


Johnston took off down the left touchline the following set before finding Lachlan Ilias back on the inside with pinpoint kick to breathe some life back into the contest.

An Isaiah Tass try with six-and-a-half to play set up a grandstand finish the Rabbitohs threatening to pull off an almighty comeback.

Thomas Burgess was binned, however, for a high shot with five minutes to play paving the path for the Sharks to hold on for a vital 26-16 win.

Katoa finished with a try and 193 metres with eight tackle breaks whilst Talakai assisted on two and ran for 144 metres.

For South Sydney, Keaon Koloamatangi ran for 189 metres and made 24 tackles whilst Mitchell assisted on a try and ran for 124 metres with six tackle breaks.

The Sharks are back in the Shire next Friday for a key clash against the Gold Coast Titans.

Cameron Laing
Owner | Local Supporter
Shire Talk

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