Bulldogs Late Season Surge

Round 20 Canterbury Bulldogs 29 vs Brisbane Broncos 22

Match summary: The Bulldogs continued their late push for the finals, with a 29-22 win over Brisbane at Telstra Stadium tonight. The Bulldogs are at least temporarily in 4th place.

The Broncos scored first after first holding the Bulldogs out for several sets. Darren Lockyer put a great kick into the in goal for a flying Shaun Berrigan to score under the posts. Hunt threw an impressive cut out pass to Justin Hodges to score in the corner for a 10-0 lead. The Bulldogs struck the next 3 blows, with tries to Matt Utai who beat defenders out wide, Tony Grimaldi who stole the ball off Hunt and scored by the posts, and Jamaal Lolesi who picked up the scraps from a cross field kick to score in the corner, giving the Bulldogs a 16-10 half time lead.

After half time, the Bulldogs got out to the biggest lead of the game at a Sherwin grubber kick hit the posts, and Mark O'Meley picked the ball up and scored next to the uprights to lead 22-10. The Broncos struck back twice, spreading the ball from inside their own 10 for a Stagg try one play later, then Lockyer got Carroll one on one with El Masri, before dragging a few defenders over the line to lock the match up at 22. Shaun Berrigan bombed a try by not grounding a Lockyer grubber kick. The Bulldogs then got a penalty 30 metres out from the line, and turned the kick down. This proved to be a good move, as Sherwin dummied through the line and scored. On television there sounded like an explosion similar to the Bulldogs/Storm finals game last year which even attracted referee Stephen Clarks attention as he talked to Lockyer while El Masri was lining up the kick. With several minutes to go Brett Sherwin missed a field goal attempt, and the Broncos earnt a penalty from the next few plays. However, Brett Seymour failed to find touch from his kick, setting Anasta up for the field goal that sealed the match.

Justin Hodges and Corey Parker were placed on report for what looked like a very dangerous tackle on a Bulldogs player.

Bulldogs v Broncos match photos: Click here to see the photo gallery for this game

Scorers: CANTERBURY BULLDOGS 29 Tries: Utai, Grimaldi, Lolesi, O'Meley, Sherwin Goals: El Masri (4/5) Field Goals: Sherwin (0/1), Anasta (1/1) BRISBANE BRONCOS 22 Tries: Berrigan, Hodges, Stagg, Carroll Goals: Seymour (3/4)

Venue: Telstra Stadium Crowd: 29,112 Referee: Stephen Clark Half time: Bulldogs 16-10

Live commentary: 0 min: The Bulldogs kick Round 20 off at Telstra Stadium!

2 min: Utai strips the ball off Hodges with the Broncos on attack, then earns a penalty.

6 min: 4 penalties in the first 6 minutes, 3-1 Bulldogs.

7 min: El Masri chimes in from fullback, goes close but O'Meley can't hold onto the offload.

12 min: The Broncos survive three sets on their own line. Penalties 4-2 Bulldogs. Very entertaining forward battle so far.

16 min: TRY - Broncos The leading try scorer Shaun Berrigan latches onto a great Lockyer grubber and scores under the posts. Seymour converts. Bulldogs 0 - 6 Broncos.

19 min: Sherwin attempts a 40/20 and manages to find touch 45 metres out from the Bulldogs line, an overall gain of about 15 metres.

21 min: TRY - Broncos The Broncos move the ball left, right and center before Hunt throws a great cut-out pass on the last for Hodges to score in the corner. Seymours kick falls short of the posts. Bulldogs 0 - 10 Broncos

26 min: TRY - Bulldogs Myles makes a bust up the middle, the next play sees the ball spread past Brisbane defenders for Utai to cross out wide and improves his position. El Masri converts. Bulldogs 6 - 10 Broncos.

30 min: TRY - Bulldogs Tony Grimaldi steals the ball off Hunt and scampers across the line. El Masri converts. Bulldogs 12 - 10 Broncos.

35 min: The Bulldogs hold the Broncos out after two consecutive sets on their own line.

38 min: TRY - Bulldogs Minto misses a kick by miles and Lolesi picks up the scraps and scores. El Masri hits the posts. Bulldogs 16 - 10 Broncos.

HALF TIME: The Bulldogs have shown great character to recover from trailing 10-0 early to now lead 16-10 at half time.

The Broncos were attacking well early but looked like they were happy with a 10-0 lead and then they took the foot off the throat in attack.

40 min: The second half is underway!

46 min: NEWS - The cursed Bulldogs #1 jersey strikes as El Masri is down injured. Up now but still unsteady.

51 min: TRY - Bulldogs Sherwin grubbers the ball into the posts, the Broncos stand around and look at it like it is a four foot lesbian turtle, and O'Meley picks the ball up and scores by the posts. El Masri converts. Bulldogs 22 - 10 Broncos.

54 min: TRY - Broncos The Broncos spread the ball inside thier own 10, Berrigan links up with Minto and they interchange passes before Berrigan is stopped 10 out from the line. From the next play Stagg scores easily under the posts. Seymour converts. Bulldogs 22 - 16 Broncos.

59 min: TRY - Broncos Lockyer turns the ball inside to Carroll who drags three defenders over the line. Seymour converts the try. Bulldogs 22 - 22 Broncos.

65 min: NO TRY - Broncos Lockyer grubbers into the in goal but Berrigan fails to ground the ball correctly.

68 min: The Bulldogs get a penalty 30 metres out but decline to kick for goal.

69 min: TRY - Bulldogs The decision to not take the kick pays off as Sherwin dummies his way across the line. El Masri converts from in front. Bulldogs 28 - 22 Broncos.

71 min: Great pressure on Seymour sees him take an air swing at a kick.

74 min: Both teams forcing unneccessary passes, Broncos at the wrong end of the field to force extra time.

76 min: FIELD GOAL ATTEMPT: Sherwin misses to the right. Broncos get a penalty, Seymour doesn't find touch.

77 min: FIELD GOAL - Bulldogs Anasta kicks the match sealing field goal on the back of the Seymour error.

78 min: ON REPORT: Parker and Hodges put on report for a lifting tackle.

80 min: Lockyer is pulled down a blade of grass short of the line.

FULL TIME: The Bulldogs win an exciting match that was in the balance right up until the 77th minute.

----------------------------------------- Leagueunlimited.com players of the match: 3 - B Sherwin (Bulldogs) 2 - R Asotasi (Bulldogs) 1 - P Civoniceva (Broncos) -----------------------------------------