Moylan stars in Sharks' rout of Knights

Matt Encarnacion

Matt Moylan turned in easily his best performance since joining Cronulla, laying on six tries and being involved in a seventh in a 48-10 NRL belting of a woeful Newcastle on Sunday.

Moylan set up five of them in a stunning 14-minute spell, extending the Sharks' lead from ten to a 38 to leave the Knights' defence in tatters.

The former Kangaroos representative had his entire array of skills on show, putting teammates over with long cutout passes, short balls and pinpoint kicks.

Six different Cronulla players finished on the scoresheet, with Valentine Holmes scoring a hat trick and right-edge partner Jesse Ramien giving his future team a taste of his potential with a double.

Only some wayward goalkicking from Chad Townsend, who converted six from ten attempts, prevented the Sharks from cracking the half-century.

The win not only extends the Sharks' streak to six, but also lifts them into the top four for the first time this season and sets up a mouth-watering clash with South Sydney next week.

In contrast, the Knights' fourth straight defeat in front of a healthy crowd of 20,913 at McDonald Jones Stadium was also arguably their worst effort of the year.

It was one-way traffic from the kickoff, beginning with Moylan's pass for Ramien in the third minute.

The Knights' left edge was again exposed when they inexplicably allowed a Townsend kick to bounce for Holmes, before Matt Prior offloaded for Jayden Brailey to breeze through under the posts.

Not even a Lachlan Fitzgibbon try against the run of play could halt the Sharks' momentum, with Josh Dugan and Edrick Lee scoring soft four-pointers either side of the break.

Both were set up by former Penrith captain Moylan, who then laid on more points for Luke Lewis, Holmes and Ramien in a spectacular one-man assault.

Knights centre Nathan Ross failed to take the field in the second half after succumbing to a groin issue, while he was also put on report for tripping.