PointsBet Stadium will play host to Sunday's Round 9 NRL game between Cronulla Sharks and New Zealand Warriors. The game kicks off at 4:05 pm with Cronulla Sharks heading into the game as favourites with the bookmakers. Continue reading for our in-depth preview of the Cronulla Sharks vs. New Zealand Warriors game and give you our free tips and bets.
When: Sunday May 8, 2022 at 4:05 pm
Where: PointsBet Stadium
Bet: Bet On This Match HERE
Cronulla Sharks vs New Zealand Warriors Odds
Cronulla Sharks vs New Zealand Warriors Preview
Previously red-hot Cronulla is coming off a rude Round 8 awakening, crashing 16-7 in Brisbane after scoring at least 18 points in their first seven games.
In-form attacking guns Nicho Hynes and Siosifa Talakai were well-contained and the Sharks didn’t appear to have a viable Plan B against an unexpectedly stoic host.
But Dale Finucane is a huge in for the Sharks this week, with Braydon Trindall the player dropping out of the 17.
It’s hard to know what to make of the Warriors, they are 4-4 after their second golden point win in Redcliffe in four games, despite being arguably the worse team on both occasions.
But the 21-20 eclipse was nevertheless an admirable bounce-back from conceding 70 in Melbourne, on top of a heavy injury and suspension toll, and they showed character to overturn an eight-point deficit and keep a clean sheet after halftime.
Five-eighth Daejarn Asi was superb on club debut, Euan Aitken had a blinder on both sides of the ball and Shaun Johnson again stepped up in the clutch despite another overall super-patchy performance.
Dallin Watene-Zelezniak returns from a one-week concussion layoff in a straight swap on the wing for Jesse Arthars (shoulder).
Bayley Sironen copped a knock last week and is in the No.18, with Eliesa Katoa named to start in the second-row and Aaron Pene back from suspension on the bench.
The Sharks have won eight of their last 10 against the Warriors, though Johnson was the architect of a their recent four-match-winning run in the rivalry.
With Johnson sidelined in late-2021, the Sharks went down 18-16 to a Warriors side that fought back from a 10-point deficit despite the double sin-binning of Kane Evans.
There were promising signs from Johnson – who seems to be playing injured – in the back-end of the Raiders game, and his leadership is absolutely crucial to the Warriors getting close to the Sharks.
In saying that, the Anzac Day debacle is the only game the Kiwi outfit haven’t been in until the dying stages – and even then they were the better team in the first half.
It’s a big line for the Sharks to cover and another upset isn’t out of the question.
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Cronulla Sharks vs New Zealand Warriors Teams
Sharks team: 1. Will Kennedy 2. Sione Katoa 3. Jesse Ramien 4. Siosifa Talakai 5. Ronaldo Mulitalo 6. Matt Moylan 7. Nicho Hynes 8. Toby Rudolf 9. Blayke Brailey 10. Aiden Tolman 11. Briton Nikora 12. Teig Wilton 13. Dale Finucane 14. Jack Williams 15. Cameron McInnes 16. Wade Graham 17. Royce Hunt 18. Braydon Trindall 19. Andrew Fifita 20. Luke Metcalf 21. Mawene Hiroti 22. Connor Tracey 23. Matt Ikuvalu 24. Franklin Pele
Warriors team: 1. Reece Walsh 2. Dallin Watene-Zelezniak 3. Viliami Vailea 4. Rocco Berry 5. Adam Pompey 6. Daejarn Asi 7. Shaun Johnson 8. Addin Fonua-Blake 9. Wayde Egan 10. Matt Lodge 11. Euan Aitken 12. Eliesa Katoa 13. Jazz Tevaga 14. Jack Murchie 15. Ben Murdoch-Masila 16. Bunty Afoa 17. Aaron Pene 18. Bayley Sironen 20. Taniela Otukolo 21. Edward Kosi 22. Junior Ratuva 23. Pride Petterson-Robati 24. Jayden Corrigan 25. Jackson Frei