Roosters v Sharks: Five key points
The Sharks stunned the Roosters to record their first win of the season. Here are five key points from the shock result at Allianz Stadium.
Jack Bird is a superstar in the making
After a great debut last week against the Titans, Jack Bird set this game on fire from five-eighth.
He scored the first try, set up the second and then scored the game winner in the final minutes by stepping back against a sliding defence.
After the game Bird was heaped with compliments, which he said he was "honoured" to receive.
Coach Shane Flanagan was glowing of the youngster and welcomed the selection drama he now has when Ben Barba returns from suspension.
"Birdy had a great game, scored two tries we knew he had it in him... he's got a big future in front of him," he said
"I want that selection headache, it's a challenge for me and I'm really happy to have it."
Sharks captain Paul Gallen added his praise, saying he's been pushing the youngster in front of Flanagan for a long time.
"He's a good kid, he's got that knack, he's got that vision, he's tough as nails and he's got a real bright future ahead of him," Gallen said.
Bird's achievements are made even more remarkable considering the fact he was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis at the age of 16.
Teams should stop trying to bomb Daniel Tupou
Despite not having their best game in attack, the Roosters were rock solid in defence throughout the first half.
Nobody was more impressive defending their own line than Daniel Tupou who showed the Sharks that kicking to him is a pointless venture.
On top of his 195cm frame, Tupou has an athletic leap and superb soft hands that he uses to take the ball high above his head.
No other player in the NRL can even challenge for the ball at the point Tupou catches it.
Paul Gallen's brilliance is barely noticed
Gallen came out with another huge performance on Sunday afternoon against the Chooks. While all the attention turned to Jack Bird in the aftermath of the match, Gallen quietly went about his business with 24 runs for 234 metres and 26 tackles. All that despite spending time off the field for a concussion test after a collision with Dylan Napa.
Despite his efforts against a powerful Roosters pack Gallen deflected any praise post-match onto young debutant Bird.
"Gallen is always good he never plays a bad game," Roosters second-rower Boyd Cordner said after the game.
Roger Tuivasa-Sheck the only Rooster to carry on from last week
After a 34-6 demolition of the Raiders last week the Roosters backs failed to carry on their superb form to Easter Sunday's clash. All except Roger Tuivasa-Scheck, that is, who was impressive with 27 runs for 334 metres, four tackle busts, one try and a line break.
RTS showed blistering pace through the middle to score his 66th minute try, burning the cover defence.
Roosters captain Mitchell Pearce took ownership for the lack of potency in his side's attack.
"It was really disappointing across the board especially a lot of our attack, which I take ownership for, wasn't on," Pearce said.
Trent Robinson added that his side needs to learn how to put points on when things aren't going their way through the middle.
"It's not always going to go our way, we just need to control ourselves a bit better," the Roosters coach said.
Sharks may have reached a turning point
After four straight losses to open the season, the Sharks were due a breakout performance considering the quality and pride in their team.
With such a morale boosting performance against one of the competition heavyweights, the Sharks are now looking to put back-to-back wins together.
Roosters coach Trent Robinson was in no way surprised about the big performance Cronulla put on.
"I think they've been disappointed with where they've been at and they came out and had their day today," Robinson said.
Their improved performance is due largely to inspirational skipper Gallen who said the result was all about the team's confidence.
"I got the boys on the bus before the game alone and I just said I want us all to be confident because we've dead-set beaten ourselves through the (first) four games so we needed to remain confident and I thought we did that," Gallen said.