The Sharks Jersey Flegg side has gone down in their finals match against Parramatta to fall one game short of a second consecutive Grand Final. In a defensive struggle, it was the Eels who came out on top in the Grand Final qualifier, a lone second half try giving the Parramatta Flegg team a 10-6 victory.
The teams went to the break 6-points all and despite having numerous scoring opportunities in the second stanza, the Sharks just couldn?t cross their opponents try line as the Eels defence held firm.
While disappointed with the result, Sharks Flegg coach Aaron Raper praised his young team in his after-match address for their efforts in the Eels match as well as throughout the year.
A couple of Sharks errors early in the first half gave their opponents plenty of field position and the Eels capitalised in the 10th minute with a try to their centre Jarryd Hayne, converted by Blake Green.
After Sharks halfback Ben Green had kicked a field goal to narrow the gap to four points, a spectacular try, finished off by Kurt Puohotaua, brought the scores level. With the last tackle signalled the Sharks decided to run the football, with Matt Raftery and Dimitri Pelo combining down the right hand side in attack before the ball found hooker Tony Caine who threw a pin point long pass for Puohotaua to touch down out wide.
The second half was an arm wrestle as both teams created then bombed scoring opportunities before Hayne went over for his second try for the Eels, out-leaping the Sharks defence after his five eighth Green had put in a cross field kick.
As hard as they would try in the closing moments, the Sharks couldn?t bridge the gap and the Eels would win their way through to a Grand Final match-up with the St George Illawarra team.
Earlier in the night the Dragons defeated the Sydney Roosters 27-6 in what was a spiteful encounter.
Strong for the Sharks in their loss to the Eels were forwards Luke Douglas, Brodea Sanders and Kris Pyper, while James Bannister was enthusiastic off the interchange bench. In the backs Pelo tried hard and centre Dane Neilsen and Matt Raftery enjoyed some good moments in attack and were solid in defence.
SHARKS 6 Kurt Puohotaua try, Ben Green goal
PARRAMATTA 10 Hayne 2, Blake Green goal.Like