Given the crowd at Southern Cross Group Stadium on Saturday night, it’s fair to say the shire has missed its rugby league.
Cronulla blew out the summer cobwebs with a 30-14 win over Manly in their first official trial match of the 2018 NRL season.
A healthy crowd made their way through the gates as Sharks coach Shane Flanagan handed debuts to Matt Moylan, Aaron Gray, Braden Uele, Ava Seumanufagai and Trent Hodkinson.
While a number of Cronulla’s high profile players were left out, the likes of Paul Gallen, Wade Graham, Josh Dugan, Andrew Fifita, Luke Lewis and Matt Prior put plenty of smiles on faces as they signed autographs for fans prior to kick-off.
The Sharks face the Wests Tigers at Campbelltown next Saturday night in their final trial match.
Cronulla start the season in Townsville against North Queensland on March 9.