Wests Tigers suffered a disappointing 34-22 loss to Cronulla Sutherland Sharks at Sharks Stadium tonight in round 17 of the Holden Cup.


Three tries in the opening 11 minutes to the home side proved too much for Wests Tigers to pull back despite only trailing by two points at half-time.


The Sharks opened the scoring in the 5th minute when centre Re Pittman scored out wide. The try was not converted. Full-back Valentine Holmes failed to convert the try.


A minute later, a break by five-eighth Nesiasi Mataionga saw him send half-back Jake Walsh over untouched under the posts. Holmes converted the try from in front for a 10-0 lead.


The Sharks posted their third try in the 11th minute when winger Dallas Wells dived over in the corner. Holmes failed to convert from the sideline for a 14-0 lead.


Cronulla went to an 18-0 lead when prop Winstone Asotasi crashed over next to the posts. Holmes failed to convert the try in the 16th minute.


Wests Tigers got on the board in the 22nd minute when full-back Kurtis Rowe backed u a break from smart hooker Manaia Cherrington to race 45 metres to score. Five-eighth Manaia Rudolph converted from in front to leave Wests Tigers trailing 18-6.


Andrew Kazzi got Wests Tigers back to 18-10 when he scored under the posts. Rudolph converted to leave Wests Tigers trailing 18-12 after 31 minutes.


Wests Tigers were let off the hook in the 34th minute when the Sharks had a two players unmarked but the final pass went to ground 15 metres from the Wests Tigers tryline.


Three minutes before half-time, Wests Tigers spread the ball right inside their own half before winger Allan McGrath beat three defenders in a 60 metre run to score in the corner to make it 18-16. Rudolph failed to convert from the sideline.


2nd Half

Cronulla stretched their lead to 22-16 in the 47th minute when Holmes beat two defenders to score in the left corner. Walsh converted the try for a 24-16 lead.


Walsh gave the Sharks a 28-16 lead when he scored next to the posts in the 62nd minute. He converted his own try for a 30-16 scoreline.


Cherrington continued his fine game when he crashed over from dummy half. Rudolph converted for a 30-22 scoreline after 74 minutes.


The Sharks went in again through Pittman in the dying minutes for a 34-22 scoreline.


Wests Tigers team

2 Kurtis Rowe

3 Nathan Milone

4 Leva Li

5 Allan McGrath

6 Manaia Rudolph

7 Matt Mulcahy

8 Andy Figatusa

9 Manaia Cherrington

10 Jake Dooner

11 Kyle Lovett

12 Brenden Santi

13 Fosio Tatola


INTERCHANGE

14 Richard Ene

15 Andrew Kazzi

16 Rhys Armstrong

17 Luke Williams

18 Brad Soe