|ROUND 7 FIXTURES:
(All times shown are Sydney time)
Friday 23rd April
Canterbury v Brisbane (7:30pm, ANZ Stadium)
North Queensland v Parramatta (7:30pm, Dairy Farmers Stadium)
Saturday 24th April
Penrith v Wests Tigers (5:30pm, CUA Stadium)
Cronulla v Newcastle (7:30pm, Toyota Stadium)
Sunday 25th April
Canberra v South Sydney (2:00pm, Canberra Stadium)
St George-Illawarra v Sydney Roosters (4:00pm, Sydney Football Stadium)
Melbourne v New Zealand Warriors (6:00pm, Docklands)
Monday 26th April
Manly v Gold Coast (7:00pm, Brookvale Oval)
Top spot was on the line when Gold Coast hosted St George-Illawarra at Robina on Friday night, and it was the
visiting Dragons who would take the points with a 19-6 win over the Titans.
The first half was an arm wrestle, a battle for field position in which for a long time neither side was able to get into a
scoring zone. But eventually it was the Dragons who were able to make more metres during their sets; and after
nearly half an hour Matt Cooper broke through for the opening try of the night.
It was 6-0 at the break, but the Dragons knocked on from the kick-off, giving the Titans the opportunity to get back
into the contest. The Titans would have plenty of the ball, with the Dragons forced to concede a series of line drop-
outs; but the Dragons held firm and the Titans were unable to penetrate the line. And eventually the tide turned,
and after Ben Creagh dived on a Soward bomb they were on the scoreboard again with their second try.
Jamie Soward broke through with 15 minutes to go to extend the lead to 18-0, and a field goal a few minutes later
put the result beyond doubt. And even though Michael Henderson finally broke over the line in the 78th minute for a
consolation try, the Titans were condemned to their first home loss for the season as the Dragons tightened their
early-season grip on top spot.
St George-Illawarra Dragons 19 def Gold Coast Titans 6
Dragons : Tries – M Cooper, B Creagh, J Soward. Goals – J Soward 3/3. Field Goals – J Soward 1/1.
Titans : Tries – M Henderson. Goals – P Campbell 1/1.
Referees – T Archer, J Robinson. Crowd – 21,336 at Skilled Park.
An upset at the Sydney Football Stadium saw the Bulldogs run up a 24-4 win over the high-flying Wests Tigers on
The first half hour was a struggle for both teams. Although it was scoreless after half an hour, it was not for a lack of
effort. Both sides played enterprising football, throwing the ball around and attacking hard; but handling errors would
let them down. But eventually the Bulldogs were getting on top. Josh Morris made a run on 30 minutes, but the try
was disallowed when the video replayed showed Morris putting his foot over the sideline.
But just five minutes later, Jamal Idris found himself on the end of a kick, and a quick offload to Michael Ennis set up
the opening score of the game, the Bulldogs taking a 6-0 lead into the break.
Shortly after the restart, Luke Patten weaved his way around the Tigers’ defence to score another try; Bryson
Goodwin’s conversion boosting the score to 12-0. But the Tigers weren’t finished yet; and the next 10 minutes saw
them put in their best passage of play for the match, pressing the Bulldogs’ line.
Robbie Farah created a chance with a 40-20 kick, but nothing came of it. But on the next set, Lote Tuqiri went for a
50m run to score in the corner and get the Tigers on the board. Benji Marshall’s conversion attempt was
unsuccessful, but the scoreline was back to 12-4.
From end to end the ball travelled, both sides trying desperately for another score. But the arm wrestle went the
Bulldogs’ way, and on 74 minutes Michael Ennis crashed through for his second try to make the game safe. Brett
Kimmorley put the icing on the cake in the dying minutes, and the Bulldogs were home for their second win of the
Click here to see Harboursport’s photo gallery from this match.
Canterbury Bulldogs 24 def Wests Tigers 4
Bulldogs : Tries – M Ennis 2, L Patten, B Kimmorley. Goals – B Goodwin 4/4.
Tigers : Tries – L Tuqiri. Goals – B Marshall 0/1.
Referees – J Maxwell, B Sutton. Crowd – 19,491 at Sydney Football Stadium.
Newcastle recorded their second win for 2010 when the Knights overcame North Queensland to complete a 36-18
home win at Energy Australia Stadium on Saturday night.
It took just 4 minutes for the Knights to open the scoring, Cameron Ciraldo crashing through a wall of Cowboy
defenders to score in the corner. The conversion was unsuccessful, but two minutes later the Knights were in again
when Jarrod Mullen set up Keith Lulia. And on 12 minutes the Knights had their third try, Corey Paterson wrong-
footing the Cowboy defence with a dummy before crashing over. Kurt Gidley made the score 16-0.
On 20 minutes, Isaac de Gois faced minimal opposition to stroll across the line for the Knight’s fourth try, and with a
20-0 lead the game looked poised to be a blowout.
A fumble from a bomb enabled Shannon Gallant to get the Cowboys on the board, but any hopes of a North
Queensland fightback in the first half were snuffed out by a quick-fire double to Cooper Vuna. At the long break, the
home crowd were in raptures, giving their local heroes a standing ovation as they came into the sheds with a 30-6
But amazingly, this game was far from decided as the North Queensland side came out fighting in the second half.
Back to back sets enabled John Williams to score in the corner; and on the hour, Ashley Graham crashed through the
Newcastle line to score under the posts. Both tries were converted, and suddenly the margin was back to 12 points.
And it could have been even closer, but Ty Williams bombed what looked like a certain try just a few minutes later.
But with just a few minutes to go, the Knights scored one more try to make the game safe. Corey Paterson was in
the thick of the action, keeping the Cowboy defence guessing before offloading to Cooper Vuna for the try that
would bring up Vuna’s hat-trick and would put the game beyond doubt.
Newcastle Knights 36 def North Queensland Cowboys 18
Knights : Tries – C Vuna 3, C Ciraldo, K Lulia, C Paterson, I de Gois. Goals – K Gidley 4/7.
Cowboys : Tries – S Gallant, J Williams, A Graham. Goals – J Williams 3/3.
Referees – C James, A Klein. Crowd – 14,205 at Energy Australia Stadium.
One of the key factors behind the rise of the Roosters so far this season has been the signing of Todd Carney. The former Raiders bad boy,
lining up against his former team-mates for the first time, continued his rehabilitation with a dominant performance, with two tries and a glut of
possession in the Roosters’ 36-6 demolition of Canberra at the Sydney Football Stadium on Saturday night.
The Raiders blew two clear try opportunities in the first 10 minutes, and were made to pay when Anthony Minichiello chased a grubber to
score in the corner. And in the next set after the conversion, Sean Kenny-Dowall dummied and wrong-footed the Canberra defence to put the
Roosters 12-0 ahead. A double to Carney on either side of the half-time break gave the Roosters a 24-0 break and from there victory was
Joel Thompson managed one goal for the Raiders, but it was a rare highlight in what was a night to forget for the Canberra side. Turnovers,
dropped ball and poor decision-making were the regular features of the night for them. The Roosters, on the other hand, just had to retain
possession and complete their sets to dominate proceedings; and did just that to complete a comprehensive 6 tries to 1 drubbing.
Sydney Roosters 36 def Canberra Raiders 6
Roosters : Tries – T Carney 2, A Minichiello, S Kenny-Dowall, N Kouparitsas, FP Nuuausala. Goals – T Carney 4/4, B Anasta 2/2.
Raiders : Tries – J Thompson. Goals – T Campese 1/1.
Referees – M Cecchin, S Lyons. Crowd – 9,308 at Sydney Football Stadium.
Penrith consolidated their position in the top 8, the Panthers crossing the Tasman and putting on a dominant performance to condemn the
Warriors to their second straight home defeat.
The first half was one-way traffic, and it didn’t take long for the match to show all the signs of being a Penrith procession. Adrian Purtell found
a gaping hole in the Warriors’ line after just 5 minutes to land the opening try, and when Kevin Kingston had got on the board just a few
minutes later the tone of the half was set. The Panthers scored 4 tries for the half to lead 22-0, and the lead could have been even greater
with two first half tries disallowed by the video ref and a few more near misses.
The Warriors never looked like scoring in the first half, but just a few minutes after the second half got under way, Ukama Ta’ai burst through
to score. And when Brett Tate found the line and the try was converted, the scoreline was back to 22-12 with still nearly half an hour to go;
and the home side suddenly found themselves back in the contest with a chance to steal an unlikely win.
But it wasn’t to be. From a margin of just 12 points with 20 minutes to go, the Panthers again took control and scored the final three tries of
the match to turn what could have been a close contest into a blowout. The Panthers find themselves in good form, on a three game winning
streak and comfortably in the top 8. But it was a disappointing afternoon for the Warriors who have already dropped two home games this
season; and with a tough clash against defending champions Melbourne to come next week, the Warriors have some work to do to rediscover
the form they promised to show this season.
Penrith Panthers 40 def New Zealand Warriors 12
Panthers : Tries – A Purtell 2, K Kingston 2, L Coote, M Gordon, T Burns. Goals – M Gordon 6/8.
Warriors : Tries – U Ta’ai, B Tate. Goals – J Maloney 2/2.
Referees – G Badger, B Suttor. Crowd – 14,620 at Mt Smart Stadium.
The bottom two teams played off at Suncorp on Sunday afternoon as Brisbane took on Cronulla, and the Broncos would condemn the Sharks
to last on the ladder when they ended their 4-game losing streak with a 44-16 victory.
The Broncos welcomed back Corey Parker, Jharal Yow Yeh and Israel Folau, who returned to the side after injury, and all three played
prominent roles in the Broncos’ performance.
From the moment Mark Gillett crashed through some flimsy Cronulla defence to score in the third minute, it was one-way traffic through the
first half as the Broncos ran through six tries to lead 32-0 at the break. Gillett and Folau completed first half doubles; while Dunamis Lui and Ben
Te’o completed two of the easiest tries ever, strolling through minimal opposition to score under the posts. At the other end, the Sharks
struggled to complete their sets, and scoring was out of the question as the Cronulla side struggled to make any impact at all against the
ruthless Brisbane defence.
With the game safe at the break, the Broncos took their foot off the gas and the Sharks won the second half. But it was too little too late,
the damage was done and the Broncos were on their way to a welcome victory.
Brisbane Broncos 44 def Cronulla Sharks 16
Broncos : Tries – M Gillett 2, I Folau 2, D Lui, B Te’o, S Thaiday, J Hoffman. Goals – C Parker 6/8.
Sharks : Tries – T Smith, I Gordon, S Vave. Goals – N Stapleton 2/3.
Referees – T De las Heras, J Robinson. Crowd – 25,688 at Suncorp Stadium.
Parramatta took their home game against Souths to ANZ Stadium, and were justified when a crowd of 25,152, well above the capacity of
Parramatta Stadium, made their way to the game. And the Eels would also take the spoils of victory, a strong second half giving them a 22-8
result against the Rabbitohs.
It took just 4 minutes for the Rabbitohs to get on the board, with Fetuli Talanoa being on the end of a play out wide to score in the corner. It
was the start of a horror opening 20 minutes for the Eels, with numerous drop balls and unforced errors; and on 20 minutes Sutton set up
Colin Best, who had no trouble overcoming the feeble defence of Krisnan Inu to score the Rabbitohs’ second try. But importantly, Isaac Luke
was unable to convert either try.
But, although they had Parramatta on the ropes, the Rabbitohs then made a string of mistakes and let the Eels off the hook. And the
momentum slowly began to turn as the Eels started making better territory and slowly but surely worked their way into an attacking position.
And on the stroke of half-time, the Rabbitohs were penalised for being offside and a penalty goal after the siren to Luke Burt reduced the
margin to 6 points.
The Eels emerged from the sheds after the break looking sharper than Souths, and it didn’t take long for the Eels to be pushing the South
Sydney line. Tim Mannah had a try disallowed, but just two minutes later Timana Tahu found the line; Burt’s conversion levelling the scores.
A chip and chase by Luke Burt gave the Eels the lead, and a penalty goal extended the margin. And as the clock was running down, Nathan
Hindmarsh found an opening before offloading to Daniel Mortimer; the try putting the result beyond doubt.
For Parramatta co-captain Nathan Hindmarsh, the match was his 266th, the record number of appearances in Eels colours. And fittingly,
Hindmarsh was among the Eels’ best.
Click here to see Harboursport’s photo gallery from this match.
Parramatta Eels 22 def South Sydney Rabbitohs 8
Eels : Tries – T Tahu, L Burt, D Mortimer. Goals – L Burt 5/5.
Rabbitohs : Tries – F Talanoa, C Best. Goals – I Luke 0/2.
Referees – B Cummins, G Sutton. Crowd – 25,152 at ANZ Stadium.
Melbourne hosted Manly at Docklands on Monday night, and again fell short against their 2008 grand final nemesis. The margin was considerably
closer than the fateful 40-0 scoreline in that decider, but the result was still the same with the Sea Eagles achieving the rare honour of taking
the points in Melbourne.
It was a flying start to the Sea Eagles that did the damage. It took just three minutes to get on the board, with a chip from Kieran Forlan
setting up Glenn Stewart to score under the posts. Michael Robertson then took over as chief destroyer, twice scoring in the corner within a 4-
minute period; and after 16 minutes the Sea Eagles already held a 16-0 lead.
With 10 munutes to go before the break, the Storm got one try back when Brett Finch set up Bryan Norrie, but the Storm suffered a body
blow minutes later when Greg Inglis departed with a leg injury and would play no further part in the game. A penalty goal to the Sea Eagles on
the stroke of half time saw the visitors lead 18-6 at the break.
For 25 minutes after the break the ball travelled from end to end. The Sea Eagles searched for the knockout blow, while the Storm attempted
to find the spark that would get them back into the contest. Finally on 66 minutes it was the Storm who broke through, Cooper Cronk
crashing over to score under the posts. But uncharacteristically, Cameron Smith missed the conversion attempt from directly in front.
Cronk found an opening with 7 minutes to go and dived over for his second try. Smith made the conversion this time, but his previous miss had
left the Storm 2 points short. And the Sea Eagles would defend grimly for the final minutes, denying the Storm the miracle comeback.
Manly Sea Eagles 18 def Melbourne Storm 16
Sea Eagles : Tries – M Robertson 2, G Stewart. Goals – J Lyon 3/4.
Storm : Tries – C Cronk 2, B Norrie. Goals – C Smith 2/3.
Referees – T Archer, A Shortall. Crowd – 14,171 at Docklands.