Canberra are starting to gain momentum by grabbing their second win in as many weeks after holding off a spirited Cronulla side at Toyota Park to win 24-14.
The hosts started strongly and a neat piece of vision from fit-again Trent Barrett put David Simmons away for the first of his three tries.
Canberra hooker Stuart Flanagan exposed some poor marker defence when he darted over from dummy-half although a Luke Covell penalty equalled the scores at 6-6 at the break.
Simmons grabbed his second – a carbon copy of his first before claiming his hat-trick with the next score from Brett Seymour’s kick.
But the Sharks were exposed again, this time by veteran forward Alan Tounge who barged his way under the posts forcing the home side to attack desperately in the dying minutes. But things backfired for the hosts when Terry Campese galloped under the sticks late on after collecting a lose pass.
Melbourne showed their steel by grinding out a workmanlike 16-14 victory over Penrith.
The Storm started strongly but it was the Panthers who grabbed the first score through Brad Tighe after Michael Jennings had broken out.
The Panthers pressed but the home side held out and managed a score through Billy Slater who beat a tiring Panthers defence to score under the posts.
It was the hosts who acclimatised better to the damp conditions after the break when Anthony Quinn collected a kick to score although the Panthers hit back through Luke Lewis who raced through from a neat Wade Graham pass.