The Sharks believe they can make a run to the NRL finals after pulling off a second straight miraculous comeback win.
Turn the porch light on; Harold Holt might be coming home after all.
After a season rocked by scandals, turmoil and a crippling injury toll, suddenly Cronulla players believe in miracles.
And who wouldn’t after bettering their remarkable victory from 22-0 down against Brisbane last week with the greatest comeback win in the club’s 47-year history when they toppled the Sydney Roosters 30-28 on Saturday night.
With no coach, no captain, no playmaker and no rep stars, just a bunch of misfits and NRL rookies, the Sharks were given no hope against the might and power of the reigning premiers on their home turf at Allianz Stadium.
The Roosters boasted eight internationals and two State of Origin discards in little generals James Maloney and Mitchell Pearce.
The battered and bottom-placed Sharks gave them a 24-0 head start and still managed to pull off another win for the ages.
Little wonder the Sharks are now dreaming of making a run to the finals.
Cronulla are four wins outside the top eight with nine games remaining.
But match-winner Michael Gordon believes the Sharks have the belief to kick on with the return next week of skipper Paul Gallen, his Blues teammate Luke Lewis and 2013 prop of the year Andrew Fifita soon after.
“Anything’s possible in this comp,” Gordon said after slotting the winning conversion 90 seconds from fulltime.
“We’ve showed signs the last two weeks what we’re capable of and it’s just about being consistent now.
“We’ve got some more players coming back next week and hopefully we can build on that and I’m sure the boys will take a lot of confidence out of this win.”
Even the sacking of playmaker Todd Carney last Sunday and the walk-out of caretaker coach Peter Sharp on Monday couldn’t break the Sharks, who have shown incredible resilience in the face of the long-running ASADA controversy dogging the club.
“With everything that happens off the field, it brings everyone closer to together and you can see it out there,” Gordon said.
“It’s been one of the strangest seasons off the field. But the last two weeks on the field and training has been really positive and obviously to win like that is pretty special.”
Legendary coach Jack Gibson once famously said waiting for Cronulla to win a premiership was akin to leaving the porch light on for Harold Holt.
But stand-in captain Wade Graham promised fans the Sharks would continue the fight.
“Big ‘Gal’ and ‘Lewy’ will be back next week if they get through (Wednesday night) and I can guarantee you that every player will show up every week and try their butt off,” he said.
After watching his side squander a golden opportunity to climb back into the top four, Roosters coach Trent Robinson admitted the premiers could do with some of the Sharks’ spirit.
“They never let up,” he said.
“They did what they did last week and they fought hard and we need to find a bit of that ourselves.”