The Sharks have won a game. Not only have they achieved a win, they put 26 points on the Knights at Toyota Park tonight.
Now it’s not time for fans in the Shire to pop the corks.
It seems the consignment of Melbourne to the wooden spoon may have lifted some pressure from the shoulders of Cronulla, with some critics suggesting thats why they played more freely tonight.
But gee the Knights were bad.
Full credit to the Sharks, they got the points, they took the win – but the Newcastle side looked extremely average tonight.
Knights coach Rick Stone pointing the finger squarely at the attitude and desire of his side – something that was obviously lacking.
Thats one thing the Sharks have maintained even at their lowest point, they don’t have a top notch roster – but even when injury and crisis set in – the Sharks always had a dig.
It seemed tonight, Newcastle simply did not.
Cronulla still have some cohesion issues with Tim Smith and Trent Barrett learning to play together and sharing the role of guiding this team around as well as kicking – but after tonight, there will be much more hope.
That pressure being released will be evident not only with players – but probably with their coaching staff too, who have had to also deal with the weekly postmortems after regularly losses.
Next week will be a good test for both these sides. Can Rick Stone and the Knights write this off as a bad day at the office, or has a rot set into the Newcastle side?
Will the Sharks continue to play a more relaxed brand of football and build from this win?