A wet evening at Telstra Stadium, still with a good crowd turnout, saw the favourites, the Canterbury Bulldogs defeat the Parramatta Eels by 30 - 10.
After initially starting well, the Parramatta side were soon overcome by the skills of the Bulldogs side, even in the wet conditions.
Stand out performances by Price, Sherwin, O'Meley and big Willie Mason for the Bulldogs, and Cayless and Dykes for Parramatta.
The Eels let the game slip away from them in the first half, and to their credit they kept fighting until the final whistle, but really had no answer for the rampaging Bulldogs pack who played exceptionally well considering the slippery conditions.
The game slipped away a bit in the second half, but with the weather conditions worsening, the quality of the play lasped. All in all a good win to the Bulldogs.
League Unlimited Players for the Match:
3. Sherwin (Bulldogs) 2. Price (Bulldogs) 1. Mason (Bulldogs)
v Fri Apr 4, Telstra Stadium, 7:30pm
Scorers: Bulldogs 30 Tries: Utai, Vagana, O'Meley, Patten, El Masri Goals: El Masri (5/7) defeated Eels 10 Tries: Moodie, Graham Goals: Moodie (1/2)
By the clock:
A wet night in Sydney for the game
2nd min: PENALTY GOAL - El Masri for Bulldogs. 2 penalty decisions to the Bulldogs within 2 minutes, and they decide to take the points on the 2nd one, from right out in front. Bulldogs 2-0
8th min: TRY - Moodie for Eels. Parramatta making ground every time they get a set of six. Great 60 metre plays to get Moodie across the line in the left hand corner. Moodie, from the sideline, misses converting his own try. Eels 4-2
17th min: TRY - Utai for Bulldogs. A bit of a pushover try with 5 Eels player stopping Utai on the line, Talau comes in to give a helping hand, and everyone tumbles over the line. El Masri misses the conversion. Bulldogs 6-4
24th min: TRY - Vagana for Bulldogs. A mistake by Moodie who passes the ball to Vagana by mistake, who goes in unopposed. El Masri misses another conversion. Bulldogs 10-4
31st min: TRY - O'Meley for Bulldogs. Great team try involving Price and Sherwin who are having great games, getting Shrek into the gap. After 29 mins, still no interchange for the Bulldogs. El Masri gets the kick. Bulldogs 16-4
34th min: TRY - Patten for Bulldogs. A little chip by Sherwin not gathered by the Eels defence, and Patten seizes the moment. El Masri converts. Bulldogs 22-4
39th min: TRY - El Masri for Bulldogs.After looking certain to score, the Eels fell apart and suddenly the ball is down the other end of the field, with El Masri smiling as he slides across the line. El Masri converts his own try in his 150th first class game. Bulldogs 28-4
HALF TIME: A good start by the Eels, but the Bulldogs class in the rain soon mowed them down. 5 tries to 1 in the first half
46th min: TRY - Graham for Eels. Earlier in the set, a lovely break by Dykes to get away from the Bulldogs line. Getting the penalty, the Eels score easily. Moodie converts. Bulldogs 28-10
48th min: NEWS - Norton (Bulldogs) on the sideline with a knee injury. Bulldogs 3/12 interchange, Eels 7/12
51st min: PENALTY GOAL - El Masri for Bulldogs. 2nd penalty within 30 seconds to the Bulldogs, for tackle infringements, and El Masri slots one over from right in front. Bulldogs 30-10
57th min: NEWS - Thurston (Bulldogs) off the field following a late shoulder charge by an Eel's player. No penalty given
70th min: NEWS - Both teams starting to slow down, some very tired players out there
72nd min: NEWS - Price (Bulldogs) getting a well deserved rest, and Thurston, recovered from his earlier knock, is back out playing
FULL TIME: A disappointing second half, after a fast and furious first half. The weather became worse and so did the game. A well deserved win to the Bulldogs, 30-10Like