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Sharks struggle in the wet as Goulburn start their season off strong

Goulburn City Bulldogs have come out on top on a wet day in Belconnen, dominating from the start to come out 38-14 winners against the Belconnen Sharks at NSWRL HQ.

In a one-sided fixture the Sharks were never able to get a look in, with Goulburn never trailing at any stage through the match.

It was the Bulldogs who got off to the ideal start through the hands of Mitchell Atkinson, who crashed over from close range to give the away side the first points of the day.

Vice-captain Christopher Hart was able to add the two, leaving Goulburn with a 6-0 lead just three minutes in.

The home side were however quick to hit back, with debutant Darcy Leadbitter breaking through the Bulldogs defensive line, before scurrying across the turf to get Belconnen’s first try.

Jack Beagley was not able to convert from the sideline, leaving the home side 6-4 down in the 14th minute.

Goulburn were able to push their lead further when Isaac Lanham crashed over in the 24th minute before Hart converted to push the lead to 12-4.

Just four minutes later they were on the board again, when Josh Latham played Ron Leapai through the line.

The second rower breezed past the Belconnen defence to score yet again, with Hart missing the conversion attempt to leave the away side up 16-4.

Controversy struck with just minutes remaining in the first half, when Steven Cummins appeared to have been taken into touch.

After a discussion the referees agreed that he had gotten the ball down first, giving the away side a 20-4 lead heading into the break.

Goulburn continued their dominance early in the second half with Max Flack taking the ball at his feet, planting it down in the 45th minute.

Hart was able to slot the conversion to give the away side a 22-point lead.

Only two minutes later they were in again, with Cummins scoring his second of the day after taking an intercept at halfway in the 50th minute.

The Sharks were finally able to score their second in the 54th minute, with James Thornhill breaking through the Goulburn defence before Beagley added the extra two.

Their comeback was however short-lived, as Cummins scored his hattrick in the 67th after some lovely hands down the left-hand side.

Hart was able to add the two from the sideline once again, taking their lead to 28 with only 12 minutes left.

The Sharks were able to add a consolation try to their tally, as Thornhill grabbed his second of the day after running the perfect line in the 76th minute.

Neither team were able to trouble the scorers in the remaining few minutes, as the wet weather continued to cause havoc on both teams handling, leaving Goulburn as 38-14 victors.

Goulburn will be looking to continue their form when they come up against Gungahlin Bulls at home next weekend, whilst Belconnen will be looking to get their first points of the season when they come up against Queanbeyan Kangaroos.

Acknowledgement of Country

Canberra Raiders respect and honour the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.