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Blog log from R1 of 2015: Cronulla v Canberra

Raiders edge Sharks at Cronulla

Sunday evening football coming to you from Remondis Stadium as two teams coming off poor years look to get their 2015 campaign off on a winning note (Pre-match)
The Raiders have a number of new faces with Austin, Hodgson, Nuuausala, Soliola and Waqa named on Tuesday to make their debut for the Green Machine (Pre-match)
There are two changes to the Raiders line up with Jarrad Kennedy replacing David Shillington and Luke Bateman making his debut in place of Shannon Boyd (Pre-match)
The Sharks have plenty of fresh face too with Ben Barba, Mick Ennis and Gerard Beale in the team this year. (Pre-match)
Plenty old faces back for the Sharks after the end of last year as well (Pre-match)
Today also marks the return of fantasy gun Shaun Fensom (Pre-match)
Jarrod Croker has got his captaincy off to a positive start by winning the coin toss. Sharks will kick off (Pre-match)
We are underway with the Sharks kicking off (Pre-match)
Fensom gets a hit up in early (Pre-match)
Hodgson kicks and the kick pins Gordon down in his own 10m (Pre-match)
Andrew Fifita loses the ball on the 5th on half way (Pre-match)
Penalty looks more for not getting up to his feet, Raiders in prime position (Pre-match)
Sharks stand up to Raiders pressure, Lee can’t crack the line and Sharks get the ball back (1H 2:16)
Sharks again make it to halfway on their set but this time get a kick in through Ennis (1H 3:19)
Cornish puts a high kick up, Feki catches it but is driven back into his ingoal. Line drop out Sharks (1H 3:19)
New recruit Hodgson with some good early touches for the Raiders (1H 3:19)
Soliola attacking on the left fringe coughs it up, pressure released for Sharks (1H 3:19)
Raiders penalised for being inside the 10 (1H 5:18)
Barba fails to find touch and Raiders on the march at the halfway (1H 5:18)
Penalty to the Raiders for hand on the ball. Raiders on the attack 40m out (1H 5:39)
TRY Wighton (1H 5:39)
Wighton bursts onto great pass from Croker, ref wants to check the grounding (1H 7:01)
Cornish goes down the short side, to Croker who cuts back inside and finds Wighton at pace. Video says it’s a try. 4-0 Raiders (1H 7:46)
Croker makes no mistake with the conversion 6-0 (1H 7:46)
Canberra have had all the field position and most of the possession. Good start (1H 7:46)
Raiders get to the end of their set and again a good kick the keeps the Sharks in their own end (1H 9:58)
Sharks get to the end of their set, but again poor field position. Raiders in attacking range (1H 11:10)
Austin puts a grubber in on the last but Sharks clean up (1H 11:10)
Oh dear, Ben Barba’s kick goes out on the full. That’s two in 12 minutes (1H 12:15)
Two poor kicks that is (1H 13:03)
Tilse coughs up the ball on the restart. (1H 13:03)
Plenty of offloads by the Sharks but going anywhere, eventually they turn it over but will get the penalty for a high tackle on Ennis (1H 15:10)
Sharks take the tap 15m out (1H 15:10)
Beale brought down a metre from the line as the ball goes from Barba to Gallen onto Beale (1H 15:56)
Beale knocks on and Raiders get the scrum feed (1H 15:56)
Raiders have problems getting out of their half, great run by Rapana (1H 16:28)
Graham tackled on the last with the ball, hands the ball to Canberra on the 20m
(1H 17:45)
Rapana another break down the field, Raiders on the attack (1H 18:45)
Hodgson grubbers, gets the rebound and another set on six on the Sharks line (1H 19:31)
Hodgson cops a knock but will get to his feet (1H 19:31)
Raiders desperately trying to crack the line (1H 19:31)
Austin launches it, a really well placed kick on the try line (1H 20:13)
Austin gets hit with a shoulder charge that was also a little late and Raiders get a penalty (1H 20:13)
Croker will go for goal (1H 20:50)
Heighington the offender (1H 20:50)
Croker makes no mistake, Raiders 8-0 (1H 20:50)
Raiders complete their set and get to their kick, Sharks field it 25m out (1H 21:12)
Raiders penalised and the kick for touch gets a cheer from the crowd (1H 21:12)
TRY Cronulla! (1H 23:23)
Sharks went left and came close trough Leutele. The came back down the middle and Heighinton found a runner in Anthony Tupou who scored under the post (1H 24:28)
Michael Gordon converts to make it a two point ball game. Raiders 8-6 (1H 24:37)
Tupou had only just come on the field (1H 24:37)
Good attacking set from Cronulla ends with a poor kick by Barba (1H 26:02)
Raiders get the restart from the 20m and Wighton is away! (1H 26:02)
TRY Raiders, Wighton goes in untouched. Raiders 12-6 (1H 26:02)
Wighton took the restart tap, and raced 80m to leave everyone in his wake (1H 26:02)
Croker converts and we’re back to an 8 point game Raiders 14-6 (1H 27:44)
Raiders make half a break in the return set but it falls apart (1H 30:14)
Sharks work their way down into Raiders territory and Ennis drops a pass after having a look up (1H 30:14)
Raiders to feed the scrum 15m from own line (1H 30:14)
Frank-Paul is now on for the Raiders (1H 30:59)
Gordon does well to field the kick on the last, under pressure (1H 32:22)
Robson with a massive bomb that comes down in front of the posts (1H 33:06)
Waqa went up high and Tupou got in under him, penalty Raiders (1H 33:06)
Cornish puts up a big bomb but it’s fielded in goal, a little too deep (1H 33:35)
Sharks get a piggy back penalty and are on the attack 30m out (1H 33:35)
TRY Sharks (1H 35:05)
It’s going to the video (1H 36:07)
Brilliant cut out ball by Gordon but Feki has been taken into touch by Rapana (1H 36:07)
No try (1H 36:07)
Another big kick by Cornish and Gordon lets it bounce! (1H 37:10)
Leutele finds space down the left, Sharks on the attack (1H 37:10)
Another poor last tackle option by Cronulla, Raiders get the ball back (1H 37:47)
Sharks have a new spine in 2015 and it shows, no organisation (1H 38:42)
Gordon again lets a kick bounce (1H 38:42)
Fifita busting tackles but now can’t get up (1H 38:42)
Showing signs of distress, Fensom has been put on report for a chicken wing (1H 39:16)
Sharks do their best to barge over with Fifita but he drops the ball and the half time siren sounds. (1H 39:57)
Raiders lead 14-6 which is an accurate reflection of what has unfolded. Perhaps slightly flattering the home team (Half Time)
The Raiders have been very impressive just by doing the basics. They’ve completed 83% of their sets (Half Time)
Wighton has done a great job with two tries. Hodgson has given good service in his first NRL game. (Half Time)
The Sharks look like a bunch of players that haven’t played a premiership game in a long, long time. No cohesion, no direction (Half Time)
Some good go forward by Gallen and Fifita has kept the Sharks in the game (Half Time)
Raiders get us back underway in the second half (2H 40:00)
Confirmation that Fifita is OK, kind of guessed that with that last run before half time (2H 40:00)
Ennis takes the kick on the last tackle (2H 40:32)
Austin makes a break up the middle and some scrabbling defence sees the Sharks regain the ball (2H 40:32)
Flanagan has clearly had a word to his players about their kicking game (2H 41:35)
A spot on kick from Robson sees Cronulla get a scrum feed 10m out (2H 42:24)
Again Sharks don’t look like they have a plan (2H 42:24)
Sharks go left (2H 42:24)
TRY Sharks (2H 42:24)
Barba throws a cut out ball to Feki and he won’t be denied this time Canberra 14-10 (2H 43:31)
Gordon’s kick from the sideline swings around and is good Canberra 14-12 (2H 44:09)
Fifita loses the ball in the tackle after the restart (2H 44:09)
Penalty to the Raiders, the ref called held then Fifita tried to pass it (2H 44:09)
Raiders attacking 20m out (2H 46:27)
TRY Raiders (2H 46:27)
A beautiful backline move from the Raiders, Austin throws the cut out ball to Rapana (2H 47:38)
Rapana had work to do but stretches out in the corner and scores the four pointer Raiders 18-12 (2H 47:38)
Croker misses the conversion from the sideline, 18-12 the score remains (2H 48:08)
Raiders get to the end of their set on the restart (2H 48:08)
David Fifita with a great run (2H 50:40)
Cronulla get to their kick 30m out (2H 50:40)
Robson puts up the kick and under pressure Rapana spills it. Sharks scrum feed 12m out (2H 51:36)
Cronulla get another penalty. 6 again in front (2H 51:36)
Sharks run the same play as their last try, going left and this time Leutele is over
Ref wants to check the double movement (2H 53:31)
TRY Sharks, Leutele gets the try. Raiders’ lead cut to 2 with a kick to come (2H 53:31)
Gordon shanks the conversion. Score remains 18-16 Raiders. Sharks are right in this (2H 55:02)
Sharks with a great set after the try the kick traps the Raiders near their own try line (2H 55:02)
Wighton loses the ball on the first tackle, Ennis with a great shot (2H 56:29)
Rapana has gone off with a leg injury (2H 56:29)
Gordon converts the penalty. 18-18 (2H 56:47)
Punches thrown on Raiders goal line! (2H 56:47)
Sharks pinned Wighton near the tryline, and tried to drive him back (2H 59:08)
Wighton took exception to Feki and that’s where it blew up (2H 59:34)
Feki has been given 10 in the bin (2H 59:34)
Wighton has also been sent for 10 after clearly throwing the first punch (2H 60:38)
Cronulla will get the penalty and you have to ask what Feki was supposed to do in that situation even though he gave a bit of push and shove (2H 60:38)
Gordon kicks the penalty and the Sharks are in front for the first time Sharks 20-18 (2H 61:50)
Cronulla’s kick at the end of the set goes dead in goal (2H 61:50)
Waqa is at fullback for Raiders with Wighton off (2H 61:50)
TRY Raiders (2H 62:45)
Raiders work their way up the field, get the ball back off the kick and Waqa runs in from dummy half. Raiders 22-20 (2H 63:23)
Croker converts. Raiders 24-20 (2H 63:31)
Raiders take the safe option and find touch at the end of their set, Austin showing some poise (2H 65:57)
Sharks on the attack down the right side (2H 66:27)
Back inside and Arona kicks! (2H 66:27)
Raiders regain possession (2H 67:38)
Some more push and shove after Raiders get a penalty (2H 67:38)
Robson not 100% right now as Wighton and Feki are about to come back on (2H 68:24)
6 again for Canberra, right in front (2H 68:24)
McCrone barges over but is held up (2H 69:29)
Feki and Wighton are back, 13 on 13 (2H 69:29)
Raiders go right and the pass bounces off Kennedy’s chest. Sharks get the restart (2H 69:29)
Robson bombs, Wighton catches and Feki is there to wrap him up! de je vu (2H 70:42)
This time Raiders get a penalty for a flop by Graham (2H 71:42)
Gallen has run over 200m for the match (2H 71:42)
Sharks penalised again, this time Graham came in late (2H 73:01)
Raiders with the tap 33m out (2H 73:01)
McCrone grubbers, Croker scurries through and is claiming a try (2H 74:17)
Croker hasn’t grounded that by the looks (2H 74:17)
Ref didn’t think so and neither did the video ref, score remains 24-20 Raiders. Cronulla restart with a 20m tap (2H 74:58)
Sharks make great metres, Brown looked over in the corner if not for a great tackle by Wighton (2H 77:11)
Play is called back after Gordon is ruled to have had his foot on the line at dummy half. Raiders ball (2H 77:23)
Cornish puts up a midfield bomb under pressure after a poor set and Brown drops it cold. (2H 77:23)
Raiders on the attack 40m out from Cronulla line (2H 78:40)
Austin puts the ball down 20m out and Sharks go for one last crack (2H 78:40)
Feki a good run down the sideline, does well to stay in (2H 78:40)
Papalii rushes up in defence and put great pressure on the Sharks, the play breaks down as they desperately try to keep the ball alive. (2H 79:41)
The Sharks are out of time, and the siren sounds. Raiders hold on to win 24-20 (2H 79:41)


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