Lee hands Sharks late win over Warriors

Edrick Lee has gone from zero to hero as Cronulla pulled off a last-gasp 18-15 NRL win over the Warriors at Mt Smart Stadium.

In a dramatic finish between two top-eight teams, Lee crossed in the left corner in the 78th minute to hand new signing Aaron Woods a win in his Sharks debut.

It capped a disastrous Friday night for the Warriors, who lost forwards Bunty Afoa and Tohu Harris to what appeared to be serious injuries.

The home side seemed to have an 11th victory in their grasp when halfback Shaun Johnson landed a field goal to put his team a point in front off the back of a glaring Lee handling error.

Issac Luke crossed for what shaped as a match-winning try soon afterwards but it was disallowed for offside, handing Cronulla a late chance.

They took it through Lee's second try to notch a 10th win for the season, the same number as the Warriors, who have played one less game.

Woods played his part in a dominant Cronulla pack, three days after his mid-season switch from Canterbury.

The unwanted Blues prop came off the bench and clocked up 128m from 15 runs to join Paul Gallen and Andrew Fifita as influential Sharks big men.

Deprived of possession and hammered 8-3 in the penalty count, the Warriors did well to be level 12-12 at halftime and still in the contest during the thrilling final exchanges.

Sharks coach Shane Flanagan said Lee's attitude encapsulated that of his team.

"Eddie came up with an error on the tryline but he didn't drop his bundle or lose his confidence," Flanagan said.

"The team just hung in there and had that self-belief.

"We gave them 12 (early) points and then from that moment we were outstanding."

The Warriors best period was the opening eight minutes when they set up converted tries to centres Solomone Kata and Anthony Gelling.

The visitors began to establish control, responding through Jesse Ramien and Lee, who are bound for Newcastle next year.

Chad Townsend kicked penalties either side of halftime to put the Sharks 14-12 ahead before opposite Johnson levelled the scores with a penalty 12 minutes from fulltime.

Warriors coach Stephen Kearney said prop Afoa had dislocated his elbow and Harris limped off with a "sore knee" in the final minute, but was he unsure of its severity.

"We had moments to win the game and we weren't good enough to do that," Kearney said.

"They're lessons for us against a hard footy side who know what it's all about."

Captain Roger Tuivasa-Sheck was a Warriors standout again, unleashing one spectacular run and couple of try-saving tackles to narrowly shade Valentine Holmes in a clash of two in-form fullbacks.