The Canterbury Bulldogs will take on the Melbourne Storm in the NRL Grand Final with the minor premiers sealing their spot in the grand final with 32-8 victory over the South Sydney Rabbitohs in front of 70,354 vocal fans.
The Bulldogs came out the blocks firing, going on attack from their first set before Krisnan Inu opened up the scoring in the third minute. Inu failed to convert his own try.
The Rabbitohs hit back quickly with Issac Luke doing it himself from dummy half on the back of the Rabbitohs first penalty. Adam Reynolds added the extras to give Souths' the lead.
Reynolds extended the Rabbitohs lead with a penalty goal in the 23rd minute as they upped the ante.
An unjury to Adam Reynolds helped the Bulldogs keep the Bunnies before they reclaimed the courtesy of a Sam Perrett try and Inu goal in the 37th minute.
The 2012 Minor Premiers were over again on the stroke of half-time when Jonathan Wright scored on the back of some Ben Barba brilliance. Inu converted from the side line to give his side a 16-8 lead headed into the break.
The Bulldogs were the first to draw blood again in the second with Perrett diving over in the corner for his second in the 54th minute.
Frank Pritchard extended the Bulldogs'lead five minutes later after Greg Eastwood sliced through the South Sydney defence.
Neither side were able to add to their totals over the next 20 minutes despite a spate of good attacking opportunities.
The scoreboard attendent was finally put to work again in the final seconds of the match when Eastwood intercepted a chipkick a few metres his side of halfway before streaking down the field to score.
The Bulldogs' victory sees Des Hasler become the first coach to take two different sides to grand finals in consecutive years.
Canterbury Bulldogs 32 defeated South Sydney Rabbitohs 8
National Rugby League - Finals Week 3 - Saturday September 22, 2012 7:45pm
Venue: ANZ Stadium
Referee: Shayne Hayne and Ben Cummins
Video Referee: Chris Ward and Bernard Sutton
Touch Judges: Paul Holland and Luke Potter
Crowd: 70, 354
Halftime: Canterbury Bulldogs 16 South Sydney Rabbitohs 8
CANTERBURY BULLDOGS (32)
Tries: Frank Pritchard, Krisnan Inu, Jonathan Wright, Greg Eastwood, Sam Perrett (2)
Conversions: Krisnan Inu (2/5), Kris Keating (1/1)
Penalty Goals: Krisnan Inu (1/1)
SOUTH SYDNEY RABBITOHS (8)
Tries: Issac Luke
Conversions: Adam Reynolds (1/1)
Penalty Goals: Adam Reynolds (1/1)
LeagueUnlimited.com Live Commentary Good evening NRL fans and welcome to the second 2012 NRL Grand Final qualifier where the Canterbury Bulldogs and the South Sydney Rabbitohs play off for a spot in next week's grand final against the Melbourne Storm.
We have crisp conditions at ANZ stadium tonight where both our coaches have revealed that there will be no late changes to their sides named on Tuesday.
1 min: South Sydney kick off to bring us under way at ANZ!
2 min: Bulldogs are only a few metres out on the last tackle of their first set after some clever running before Micxhael Crocker is penalised for a high shot on Kris Keating! The Bulldogs are already looking dangerous.
4 min: TRY
TRY! The Bulldogs spread it out wide through Josh Reynolds and Sam Kasiano to Krisnan Inu who opens up the scoring. Inu fails to convert.
Canterbury Bulldogs 4-0
8 min: The Rabbitohs receive their first penalty of the match and are on the attack.
10 min: TRY
TRY! Issac Luke takes advantage of some poor defence close to the line and dives straight over from dummy half close to the posts. Adam Reynolds converts to give the Rabbits the lead.
South Sydney Rabbitohs 6-4
16 min: The Bulldogs a trapped with the ball just short of halfway on tackle six.
17 min: Issac Luke drops the ball 10 out from the Bulldogs line.
22 min: Josh Morris is penalised for running a block and the Rabbitohs will go for the two.
23 min: PENALTY GOAL
Reynolds kicks the penalty goal.
South Sydney Rabbitohs 8-4
26 min: The Rabbitohs force a line drop out.
28 min: Bulldogs turn defence into attack and Josh Reynolds may have a try here.
28 min: No try! Reynolds was pushed into touch. Greg Inglis pulls off a try saver.
32 min: The Rabbits will get a scrum 20 out from the Bulldogs' line.
33 min: Chris McQueen loses the ball on tackle six and the Bulldogs are off the hook.
35 min: The Bulldogs may have an eight-point-try here after the Bulldogs bust through the Rabbitohs' try.
37 min: TRY
TRY! Sam Perrett scores in the corner of a Josh Reynolds kick. The Bulldogs have the possibility of an eight point try but Inu misses the first conversion.
38 min: PENALTY GOAL
Inu doesn't miss the extra shot from right in front.
Canterbury Bulldogs 10-8
39 min: The Bulldogs receive a penalty just short of half way.
40 min: TRY
TRY! Jonathan Wright scores of a clever little grubber from Ben Barba. Inu's conversion attempt is successful.
Canterbury Bulldogs 16-8
41 min: The second half is under way.
45 min: Luke Burgess knocks on a few metres out from the Bulldogs' line after the Rabbitohs find themselves on the attack.
53 min: The Bulldogs are slicing through the Rabbitohs' defence all over the park.
54 min: Perrett may have another try here!
55 min: TRY
TRY! The Bulldogs spread it out and Perrett dives over in the corner, the try came on the back of a break from Josh Morris. Inu misses the conversion.
60 min: TRY
TRY! Greg Eastwood makes a break from his own 30 metre line and precedes to run down field before offloading to Frank Pritchard 20 metres out who goes onto score under the posts. Inu converts.
Canterbury Bulldogs 26-8
62 min: Perrett makes a break on the outside and offloads to Reynolds who is tackled 12 metres out from the Rabbits' line.
63 min: The Rabbitohs hold on.
66 min: The Bulldogs will get a scrum 20 metres out from the Rabbitohs' line.
67 min: Luke fields a Reynolds chip-bomb and the Rabbits are off the hook.
67 min: Inu dives on a loose ball 40 out from the Rabbits' line.
68 min: Nathan Merritt flies high to save the day for the Rabbitohs.
71 min: Wright drops a bomb and the Rabbitohs will go on the attack.
72 min: Burgess loses the ball into the arms of Inu and the Bulldogs are off the hook.
74 min: Burgess loses the ball on halfway and the Bulldogs will go on the attack.
75 min: The Bulldogs will get a scrum 10 out from the Rabbitohs' line.
76 min: Keating grubbers into the in goal but there's too much weight on it.
80 min: Souths receive a penalty 10 short of halfway.
80 min: TRY
TRY! Eastwood intercepts a chip kick on halfway and not even Inglis is able to stop him from scoring. Inu adds the extras.
Canterbury Bulldogs 32-8