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A traffic jam in the middle of the NRL ladder has heaped pressure on Cronulla who will be without Will Chambers when they face the Warriors on Sunday.
Sitting 13th but behind the Sharks by only two points, the Warriors have already labelled Sunday's clash a must-win to make a charge for the finals.
But the competition is just as hot for the Sharks who need a win just to cling to eighth spot.
A shock 26-18 loss to Brisbane last week showed coach Josh Hannay a lack of intent that he can't afford to see creep into the side again.
"Coming off a disappointing loss last week we need to get back into some winning form ASAP," he said.
"I think along with the Warriors, there's probably half a dozen teams approaching every week as must-wins. It's no different for us."
Only four points separate seven teams between seventh and 13th on the ladder, with Newcastle and Gold Coast having a bye in hand.
After a golden point loss to St George Illawarra, the Warriors will be boosted by new signings Dallin Watene-Zelezniak and Matt Lodge, while gun teenager Reece Walsh makes his return from a hamstring injury.
The Sharks, however, will miss Chambers through a biosecurity complication.
The ex-Queensland centre travelled to Melbourne for the birth of his child and has now been forced into isolation for the next 14 days.
There was no breach of the NRL's biosecurity rules, but his return to Sydney on a commercial flight means he will miss Sunday's game with the Warriors and next week's clash with Canberra.
Connor Tracey has been moved into the centres as his replacement, with Brayden Trindall to partner Shaun Johnson in the halves.
"It's disappointing for Will, he was itching to get back into the swing of things after the birth of his child and we were looking forward to having him back, but I'm confident and comfortable with the depth we've got in the outside backs," Hannay said.