Cronulla boss Lyall Gorman says Andrew Fifita’s six-game ban will hurt the Sharks’ NRL finals push, but the suspension and the $30,000 fine meted out to the former representative star was deserved.
After a horror 0-4 start to the year, the Sharks have emerged as a genuine top four candidate, on the back of a purple patch of mid-season form that has included wins over premiership heavyweights Sydney Roosters, North Queensland and Canterbury.
Fifita has been one of the Sharks’ stars over that period.
But after being hit with the suspension for his abuse of a referee, he now won’t play again until the final series, if the Sharks are there.
“Our boys have gone through a really rugged start to the year, we have regrouped as a playing group and it (Fifita’s suspension) has got to have an impact,” Gorman said.
“We are a strong club and a strong group and our momentum should continue. But it has been a distraction there is no doubt about that.”