SYDNEY (AP) — Cronulla has reached the grand final of Australia's National Rugby League for the first time in 19 years by beating defending champion North Queensland 32-20 in a preliminary final on Friday.
James Moloney scored two tries and kicked six of seven goals to pass 200 points for the season and propel the Sharks into a first grand final since 1997. Cronulla hasn't won an NRL title since joining the league in 1967 but has been the beaten finalist three times.
The Sharks led 14-0 at halftime, led 26-6 with 22 minutes remaining and held firm as North Queensland rallied with two late tries.
The win made amends for Cronulla's 39-0 loss to North Queensland in last year's semifinals.
Next up is the winner of Saturday's match between Melbourne and Canberra.