ON DECK: James Maloney of the Cronulla Sharks avoided suspension this week.
ON DECK: James Maloney of the Cronulla Sharks avoided suspension this week. DAN PELED

Raiders take aim at Sharks streak

RUGBY LEAGUE: The competitor in Canberra coach Ricky Stuart will be plotting to end Cronulla's unbeaten 16-game streak at Southern Cross Stadium tomorrow and make Green Machine critics eat their words.

The Sharks' club record 15-game winning streak came to an end last weekend when they drew 18-all with the Gold Coast and Canberra will be looking to be the first team to beat them since Manly lowered their colours 22-12 at Brookvale Oval in round three.

The last time they clashed Cronulla smashed Canberra 40-16.

But Stuart has worked wonders with Canberra since and the Raiders have pushed into the top three behind Cronulla and Melbourne after several impressive wins.

Last week they poured on 10 tries in thumping South Sydney 54-4, a muscle-flexing exercise that Cronulla would be foolish to ignore.

It was Canberra's fifth win in a row and again showcased their brilliant speed and attacking skills and a defence which gave up just one try to the 2014 premiers.

It won't be easy with the Sharks 10-0 at home this season and sure to be stinging from their winning streak coming to a halt.

Coach Shane Flanagan, who confirmed Paul Gallen would play on again next season, said the Sharks would need to be "on our game” defensively.

Canberra has a recent history of ending streaks having beaten the Bulldogs after they had chalked up a dozen straight on their best recent run.

The Sharks could be ripe for the picking too, backing up five days after a very physical game against the Titans.

On the other hand the Raiders barely raised a sweat in towelling up South Sydney and will have more run in their legs late in the game.

Cronulla will want to keep the clash an arm wrestle but the Raiders will come out fast, hoping to take the crowd out of the game and getting a jump on the Sharks.

The Sharks will have James Maloney in the No.6 after he beat a judiciary charge through the week while Canberra's only change is on the wing where Brenko Lee replacing Edrik Lee.



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