The pressure was on at its highest and the Dragons responded in tremendous fashion, as they defeated the more fancied Cronulla Sharks side at Sharks Stadium winning 25-12 in front of 20,130 fans.
Sharks fans will be biting their fingernails, however, as they await news on how severe an ankle injury might be, with the initial diagnosis deemed to be a sprained foot.
It was under pressure and often-criticised Dragons five-eighth Jamie Soward that led the way, scoring a try of his own and having a hand in others, as he and some of the other Dragons players stepped up when it mattered to get them the victory.
Nathan Fien and Trent Merrin also had blinders, with Dragons coach Steve Price asked post-game whether it was a relief for his side to break their duck and get the first win of the season, one they so desperately needed.
“I think there is (a feeling of relief) in the dressing room.
“It’s not as if the boys haven’t been trying, they’ve worked their backsides off over those losses and we fine-tuned a couple of things and we went out there and replicated that tonight.”
With the continued ASADA and drugs scandal still in the news and circling through their minds, Sharks coach Shane Flanagan refused to make excuses for his side’s loss.
“I could toss that one up and that might be the case but I’m not going to throw it out there as an excuse,” Flanagan said.
“The Dragons were good and they played with some attitude and we didn’t have that.”
On the injury to Carney, Flanagan is hopeful that it is nothing serious for his key play-maker.
“He thought he heard something snap but it was his orthotic, that’s how much power went through his foot,” he said.
“They think it’s a mid-foot sprain so it’s nothing to do with his achilles or anything like that.”
3. Jamie Soward
2. Trent Merrin
1. Nathan Fien.