Sydney Roosters back-rower Ryan Matterson

After a disappointing outing last week, the Sydney Roosters have hit back with a win to defeat the Cronulla Sharks.

With the Sharks on a high after two straight wins, they were simply outmatched by the Roosters.

The Sharks cause was not helped by a late withdrawal of Josh Dugan due to a groin injury.

The injury prompted a re-shuffle of Matt Moylan to fullback and Trent Hodkinson to five-eighth.

The first half belonged to the Roosters as pinpoint Cooper Cronk kicks found Ryan Matterson on two occasions.

Though the second try is where Blake Ferguson should get the credit. He soared high above Sosaia Feki to bat the ball back to Matterson to score.

Although Valentine Holmes tried to get some respectability back into the scoreline, the Sharks still trailed 18-6 at the break.

Much of the same ensued in the second, as Luke Keary and James Tedesco combined for the latter to beat Trent Hodkinson to the line.

In the end, the Sharks were their own worst enemy. They had more line-breaks and numerous repeat sets to break down the Roosters defence but failed to do so.

Although their defence, for the most part, is solid, the Sharks attack is the worrying part for coach Shane Flanagan.

After their forwards were dominated in a disappointing loss to the New Zealand Warriors, Roosters coach Trent Robinson said his forwards were keen to bounce back.

“They wanted to stand up tonight and play better. After last week [30-6 loss to Warriors], that’s now one week. We need to keep doing it,” Robinson said.

“Possession allows those guys to run and that happened tonight,” he said of the 83 percent set completion rate.

“We controlled the ball more and the first half we had more possession and created more opportunities. It’s our best completion rate for the year, so it’s a good result.”

Although the changes disrupted the team’s cohesion, Flanagan refused to lay the blame at those.

“I think that (spine changes) has a little to do about the clunkiness but it’s not the reason we lost tonight,” Flanagan said.

“It was the penalties late in the tackle count, gifting them field position in the first half in particular.

We defended those silly, or frustrating penalties in my view, because one stage in the second half we only had just over 30 percent possession.”

Player of the Game:

3. Ryan Matterson

2. Cooper Cronk

  1. Luke Keary

By ricky

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