13.09.14 FW 1 Sharks v Cowboys 20-18

13.09.14 FW 1 Sharks v Cowboys 20-18

Postby TerryG » Tue Sep 10, 2013 9:08 pm

14th September, 4:00pm, Allianz Stadium | #NRLFINALS

Image 1 Michael Gordon, 2 Sosaia Feki, 3 Ben Pomeroy, 4 Jonathan Wright, 5 Beau Ryan, 6 Todd Carney, 7 Jeff Robson, 8 Andrew Fifita, 9 John Morris, 10 Sam Tagataese, 11 Luke Lewis, 12 Wade Graham, 13 Paul Gallen

Interchange from: 14 Isaac De Gois, 15 Chris Heighington, 16 Jayson Bukuya, 17 Anthony Tupou, 18 Bryce Gibbs, 20 Ben Ross

Coach: Shane Flanagan


Image 1 Matthew Bowen, 2 Wayne Ulugia, 3 Brent Tate, 4 Kane Linnett, 5 Antonio Winterstein, 6 Johnathan Thurston, 7 Robert Lui, 8 Matthew Scott, 9 Rory Kostjasyn, 10 James Tamou, 11 Gavin Cooper, 12 Glenn Hall, 13 Joel Riethmuller

Interchange from: 14 Jayden Hodges, 15 Taris Sims, 16 Scott Bolton, 17 Jason Taumalolo, 18 Ashton Sims

Coach: Neil Henry
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Re: 13.09.14 FW 1 Sharks v Cowboys

Postby TerryG » Thu Sep 12, 2013 9:56 pm

Preview: Sharks v Cowboys
Steve Orme/Sportal
Last Updated 11/09/2013 8:43 PM

Image
© Getty Images


HEAD TO HEAD: Played: 32, Sharks 20, Cowboys 12.
LAST TIME: Cowboys 31 def Sharks 18, Round 25, 2013 at Remondis Stadium.

MISSING IN ACTION: The Sharks have named Todd Carney to return from a hamstring injury, while prop Andrew Fifita is considered a certain starter despite failing to complete Sunday's win over the Raiders with a calf injury. Skipper Paul Gallen returns from suspension while
Sam Tagataese, Wade Graham and Jayson Bukuya are all back on deck after being rested last weekend.

Cowboys coach Neil Henry has named Australia prop Matthew Scott to make a sooner-than-expected return from a fractured finger suffered against the Sharks a fortnight ago. Scott snapped the middle finger in his left hand and had surgery last Monday but looks set to play pending final approval from his surgeon. Veteran centre Brent Tate (shoulder) and Joel Riethmuller (ribs) are both expected to play despite copping knocks in Saturday's big win over the Tigers.

FORM: The depleted Sharks scored a 38-18 victory over the Raiders in Canberra on Sunday night to claim fifth spot on the NRL ladder. They were on the wrong end of 31-18 loss to the Cowboys in Round 25, but Todd Carney was a late withdrawal with a hamstring injury and the Sharks were flat after their 32-22 upset of the Roosters six days earlier.

The Cowboys are arguably the form team in the comp after winning their last six regular-season games to storm into the NRL finals in eighth spot. They tuned up for the playoffs with a 50-22 mauling of Wests Tigers in full-back Matt Bowen's farewell game in front of the Townsville faithful.

WE THINK: Cronulla and North Queensland both head into the finals at close to full strength and in good form - but the road ends here for one of them. There is no shortage of motivation for either side, with the Cowboys playing for departing coach Neil Henry while the Sharks are bitter about the ASADA investigation that has plagued their year and have a major point to prove. The Cowboys have Johnathan Thurston and the incumbent Kangaroos props Matt Scott and James Tamou, while the Sharks roster has been built for finals footy with the likes of Paul Gallen, Luke Lewis and Todd Carney in the line-up. The Cowboys have beaten Cronulla twice this season but previous form will count for nothing in what promises to be an epic encounter at Allianz Stadium. There is nothing between these two but after a toss of the coin we'll back the Cowboys to continue their fairytale run.

Cowboys by 4


source: http://www.sportal.co.nz/league/news/preview-sharks-v-cowboys-252076
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Re: 13.09.14 FW 1 Sharks v Cowboys

Postby TerryG » Sat Sep 14, 2013 3:16 pm

Sharks at full strength for Cowboys

Image
By Ian Mccullough
AAP
2:02pm Fri 13th September, 2013


Cronulla skipper Paul Gallen is back after serving a one-match suspension

Cronulla coach Shane Flanagan says he'll have the rare luxury of fielding his full-strength side for Saturday's NRL elimination final with North Queensland at Allianz Stadium.

Flanagan has confirmed both Todd Carney and Andrew Fifita have been passed fit to play after recovering from hamstring and calf injuries respectively.

Carney has missed the past two games, including the Cowboys' comfortable win over the Sharks just two weeks ago at Remondis Stadium.

Fifita limped off in Canberra last Sunday but has been been cleared to play by the club's physio team and he'll pack down with skipper Paul Gallen, who's back after a one-match suspension for his crusher tackle on Cowboys prop Scott Bolton.

"Todd has been in this morning and he's fine and Andrew will train later today and I expect him to be fit to play," Flanagan said.

"We should be as per program and to be fair it will be the strongest team possible out on the park tomorrow.

"We've not had Gal for 50 per cent of the season and if someone had told me that at the start of the year and we'd still be where we are now I would have taken it."

The Cowboys are the form team going into the finals with six successive wins behind them including that 31-18 success over the Sharks.

Flanagan admitted that was a bad day at the office for his side, but said in the context of the season, it was not a defeat that concerned him.

"It was one of those games where we didn't go forwards and we didn't go backwards it was a tough day and the Cowboys had a lot to play for," he said.

"But we never had Todd Carney that day. The Cowboys have had a great run into the semi-finals but it's going to be very different tomorrow - both sides are going to be desperate."


source: http://www.nrl.com/sharks-at-full-strength-for-cowboys/tabid/10874/newsid/74649/default.aspx
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Re: 13.09.14 FW 1 Sharks v Cowboys

Postby TerryG » Sat Sep 14, 2013 3:21 pm

Sharks v Cowboys preview

By Nicholas Janzen
NRL.com
12:30pm Wed 11th September, 2013

Sharks v Cowboys
Allianz Stadium
Saturday 4pm

Sudden-death finals football has arrived at last. The First Elimination Final of the 2013 Telstra NRL Finals Series pits the courageous Cronulla Sharks up against the never-say-die North Queensland Cowboys – and what a clash it promises to be!

It’s hard to believe either of these sides has made it this far after the at-times horrible year they’ve endured. For very different reasons, few predicted the Sharks and Cowboys would be finals bound at various stages, let alone playing each other in the first match of a double-header at Allianz Stadium in Week One of the playoffs.

At Cronulla it’s been a case of seemingly one drama after another in what is quite probably their worst year off the field but could still prove their best ever season on it. Their list of dramas includes but is not limited to the ongoing ASADA investigation into alleged systemic doping at the club in 2011.

The Cowboys, meanwhile, were also written off throughout 2013 despite possessing a roster most critics consider one of the best in the competition. With Matt Bowen, Brent Tate, Johnathan Thurston, James Tamou, Matt Scott and Tariq Sims on their books, few expected the Cowboys to limp through the majority of the regular season – but they did just that, victorious in just six matches from the opening 20 rounds of competition. Only a six-game winning streak from Rounds 21-26 saved their season, but it was too late for coach Neil Henry, who was told he wasn’t required for 2014 just days before his side rediscovered their winning ways. Following victories against the Rabbitohs (30-12 in Round 21), Panthers (36-4 in Round 22), Titans (22-10 in Round 23), Knights (26-6 in Round 24), Sharks (31-18 in Round 25) and Tigers (50-22 in Round 26), North Queensland enter the finals with better recent form than any other side in the competition.

Cronulla have made a raft of changes to the side that beat the Raiders 38-18 in Canberra on Monday night. All are a result of rested players returning, as well as the completion of captain Paul Gallen’s one-match suspension. Todd Carney, Wade Graham, Jayson Bukuya, Anthony Tupou and Gallen return to the Sharks’ line-up, with Chad Townsend, Tyrone Peachey and Tupou Sopoaga returning to the NSW Cup. Carney, Graham and Gallen have been named to start, with Tupou and Bukuya part of a six-man bench that also includes Isaac De Gois, Chris Heighington, Bryce Gibbs and Ben Ross.

For the Cowboys, co-captain Matthew Scott is in line to make an earlier-than-predicted return from injury. Originally expected to be sidelined for three weeks after breaking his middle finger against the Sharks in Round 25, the front-rower has been named in the Cowboys’ starting pack just eight days after undergoing surgery. He will require a surgeon’s clearance before getting the final okay to make the trip south. Scott’s inclusion in the starting pack pushes Scott Bolton to the interchange bench. It’s the only change to the Cowboys side that beat the Wests Tigers last Saturday as they attempt to equal the club record of seven consecutive victories, set in 2007, and end Cronulla’s 2013 season.

This match is prop James Tamou’s 100th game in the NRL while back-rower Tariq Sims is due to hit the 50-game milestone.

Watch Out Sharks: There are plenty of stats-based reasons why North Queensland’s season, in theory at least, shouldn’t end here. Not since 2002 have the Sharks won a finals fixture at a venue other than Remondis Stadium, and history shows 83 per cent of teams this century that qualified for the finals on the back of six successive wins won in the opening week. Combined with the fact the Cowboys have scored more points at Allianz Stadium than any venue outside of Townsville (367), and that this season has defensively been the Cowboys’ best ever (17.9 points conceded per game), and there are plenty of warning signs for the Sharks.

Watch Out Cowboys: Cronulla have reason for optimism, too – it’s been their best finish to a regular season since 2008. On the back of a powerful bunch of forwards (the Sharks’ pack gain more metres for more tackle-breaks and offloads than any other club), Flanagan’s crew have scored 30-points-plus more times this year than in their previous four seasons combined (seven occasions). If this match develops into an arm-wrestle the odds fall in the Sharks’ favour too – they have won eight of 12 games this season that were decided by 10 points or less.

Plays To Watch: Expect the majority of the Cowboys’ scoring opportunities to come from the creative powers of Thurston and Bowen. Centres Brent Tate and Kane Linnett, as well as wingers Wayne Ulugia and Antonio Winterstein, will receive opportunities from their dynamic duo – it’s just a matter of how frequently the opportunities arise and how the Sharks deal with them.

For Cronulla, Carney’s running, passing and kicking game need to be monitored, but the ball-playing of Gallen, Tupou and Luke Lewis could prove pivotal too.

Key Match-Up: The two big prop-forwards entering this clash under even bigger injury clouds – Andrew Fifita up against Matt Scott.

Both sides desperately need their big Origin bookends to take the field this weekend – they’re crucial to their team’s chances of success in their most important match all season. Fifita, struggling to overcome a calf injury sustained against the Raiders, isn’t just a metre-eating machine (averaging 148 per match) – he leads the club for tries scored in 2013 with eight, too! Scott, meanwhile, trying to overcome a finger injury, has already produced the most runs (337) and metres (2994) of his decade-long career this year.

Where It Will Be Won: Todd Carney and Johnathan Thurston are crucial. The No.6s hold the aces up their sleeves during the regular season – and now the stakes are even higher. Carney is the creative force behind the Sharks – he has produced more than three times the number of try assists (20) of his nearest teammate. It is simple – shut him down and you’ve pretty much shut the Sharks down, too.

But it’s a similar case with ‘JT’ – in fact, Thurston has either scored or directly created 30.3 per cent of all Cowboys tries since 2005!

The History: Played 32; Sharks 20, Cowboys 12.
Match Officials: Referees – Matt Cecchin & Henry Perenara; Sideline Officials – Jeff Younis & Michael Wise; Video Referees – Jason Robinson & Matt Rodwell.

The Way We See It: The winning streak is wonderful but we just can’t see the Cowboys toppling Cronulla in this one. The Sharks have by far been the more consistent side all season – as their fifth-position finish indicates – and North Queensland haven’t won a finals fixture outside of Queensland since 2005.

We’ll back Cronulla by eight points.

source: http://www.nrl.com/TelstraPremiership/MatchCentre/tabid/10999/Default.aspx#matchid=3685&tab=Preview
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Re: 13.09.14 FW 1 Sharks v Cowboys

Postby TerryG » Sat Sep 14, 2013 4:11 pm

HISTORY, Played 32, Sharks 20, Cowboys 12, @AllianzStadium , 1st Meeting
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Re: 13.09.14 FW 1 Sharks v Cowboys

Postby TerryG » Sat Sep 14, 2013 4:11 pm

The Sharks have lost 8 of their last 10 games played @AllianzStadium
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Re: 13.09.14 FW 1 Sharks v Cowboys

Postby TerryG » Sat Sep 14, 2013 4:13 pm

A win to the Cowboys will see them record 7 consecutive wins for only the 2nd time in the clubs history
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Re: 13.09.14 FW 1 Sharks v Cowboys

Postby TerryG » Sat Sep 14, 2013 4:14 pm

Over the last 6 weeks the Cowboys matches have had an average score line of 32-12
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Re: 13.09.14 FW 1 Sharks v Cowboys

Postby TerryG » Sat Sep 14, 2013 4:14 pm

The Sharks have lost 8 from 11 this season against their top 8 counterparts
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Re: 13.09.14 FW 1 Sharks v Cowboys

Postby TerryG » Sat Sep 14, 2013 4:15 pm

The Sharks have conceded the last try of the match in 8 of their last 9 games against top 8 sides
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Re: 13.09.14 FW 1 Sharks v Cowboys

Postby TerryG » Sat Sep 14, 2013 4:15 pm

The Sharks are ranked 13th for tries scored this season
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Re: 13.09.14 FW 1 Sharks v Cowboys

Postby TerryG » Sat Sep 14, 2013 4:16 pm

The Cowboys have scored 8 more tries & conceded 7 less than Sharks over the last 6 weeks
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Re: 13.09.14 FW 1 Sharks v Cowboys

Postby TerryG » Sat Sep 14, 2013 4:17 pm

SHARKS:
Gordon Feki Pomeroy Wright Ryan
Carney Robson
Fifita Morris Tagataese Lewis Graham Gallen
B: DeGois H'gton Bukuya Tupou
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Re: 13.09.14 FW 1 Sharks v Cowboys

Postby TerryG » Sat Sep 14, 2013 4:17 pm

COWBOYS:
Bowen Ulugia Tate Linnett W'stein
Thurston Lui
Scott Kostjasyn Tamou Cooper Hall R'muller
B: Hodges TSims Bolton T'lolo
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Re: 13.09.14 FW 1 Sharks v Cowboys

Postby TerryG » Sat Sep 14, 2013 4:19 pm

TEAM NEWS - both are 1-17
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