Sharks bite Raiders to spoil Ricky Stuart's 300th game party

Cronulla dished out a 40-16 thrashing to Canberra Raiders, turning sour the party to celebrate Ricky Stuart's 300th game as a first-grade coach.

Stuart's Raiders have been now humbled by one of his former clubs twice in as many weeks.

Stuart hoped to celebrate his coaching milestone eight days after Parramatta fans had taunted him at Pirtek Stadium, but the Sharks weren't in the mood to give him a party at GIO Stadium.

Sharks full-back Ben Barba was particularly prominent, posting two tries.

Stuart was frustrated that his Raiders have failed to kick on from their impressive 22-8 win over Canterbury two weeks ago.

"We've got a winger and a centre showing the whole team how to play," Stuart said.

"It's embarrassing to have that situation.

"We were totally outplayed and dominated in the middle of the football field.

"I haven't seen anything since the Belmore game. That's the disappointing part. We didn't back that up."

Canberra hooker Josh Hodgson was clearly held back by Cronulla's Andrew Fifita as he chased his own kick into the Cronulla in-goal in the ninth minute, but the match officials missed the incident and it was a turning point from which the Raiders failed to recover.

Barba dotted down for a Bunker-approved try within a minute, after he grounded a kick just short of the dead-ball line, James Maloney converted and Cronulla centre Jack Bird pushed past Jarrod Croker to touch down off a pass from his full-back before another 1o minutes had passed.

Maloney booted his second conversion, and they were untroubled in taking the 12-point advantage to half-time; indeed, it was the Sharks who threatened to score again, with Sosaia Feki having a try disallowed.

Cronulla were warned for spoiling tactics in defence but kept their full complement on the field, while Canberra made a slew of errors in enemy territory.

The Raiders had to be first to score in the second half, but the stanza was only two minutes old when the Sharks' Fiji international, Jayson Bukuya, forced his way over from close range for another try converted by Maloney.

Canberra launched a two-try revival midway through the second half - with Kurt Baptiste and Jordan Rapana touching down - but Sharks winger Valentine Holmes killed the comeback with his 63rd minute touchdown.

Aidan Sezer scored for the Raiders before the Sharks glossed the verdict with two more tries in the final five minutes from Matt Prior and Maloney.

Sharks boss Shane Flanagan said his team's attack was improving but the win, which moves them into third on the ladder, level with the Cowboys and Eels, was built on defence.

"I think we're developing," Flanagan said.

"We're improving week after week but there's still a lot of improvement in us."