Time to look ahead to Sunday's decider! Rob Crosby has a full look at both teams and what to expect ...
15 hours ago
Competition favourites, the North Queensland Cowboys have continued their unbeaten run in defeating Wests Tigers 32-12 in Friday night?s ?grand final replay?. It was an emphatic victory over last year?s premiers as the Cowboys posted a club record five match winning streak to see them on top of the NRL ladder.
Saturday saw the Broncos outclass a disappointing Rabbitohs by 30-12 while the Roosters withstood a comeback from the Sharks to get home by 28-24. The Newcastle Knights provided the biggest score of the weekend in thrashing the Dragons by a whopping 54-6 in Wollongong. Andrew Johns ran riot and posted his 2038th career point, just 70 points away from breaking Jason Taylor's premiership record of 2,107 career points.
Sunday football opened in New Zealand with cellar-dwellers the Warriors going down to Manly by 22-8. The Raiders continued to struggle after being defeated 30-12 by the Bulldogs. Meanwhile last year?s minor premiers the Parramatta Eels were thumped 44-18 by the high flying Panthers.
All match results and details are listed below.
After five rounds of rugby league, Cowboys five-eighth Johnathan Thurston still heads up the LeagueUnlimited.com Player Awards leader board on 15 points. Thurston is in amazing form and has scored maximum points for five weeks running.
Champion halfback Andrew Johns missed just the one round this year, the Knights noting his absence with their round four loss. Johns has scored top points in all his other games and sits in outright second position on 12 points.
Dragons regular centre Mark Gasnier may have played his last game at five-eighth but he is still well in contention for our player awards sitting on eight points and in third position. Meanwhile Sea Eagles centre Steve Bell has scooted into fourth spot and is well within striking range on seven points
The full leader board is below.
The Leagueunlimited.com players of the match are decided by our live score updaters and tallied here each week on Monday?s Expert League wrap.
League Wrap: Round 5, 7 ? 9 April 2006 MATCH RESULTS:
North Queensland Cowboys: 32 Tries: Rod Jensen(2), Matt Sing, Johnathan Thurston, Gavin Cooper Goals: Johnathan Thurston 6/7 Wests Tigers: 12 Tries: Benji Marshall, Isaac De Gois Goals: Brett Hodgson 2/3 Half time: Cowboys 22-2 Venue: Dairy Farmers Stadium Crowd: 20,262 Referee: Steve Clark Leagueunlimited.com players of the match: 3 - Johnathan Thurston (Cowboys) 2 - Matthew Bowen (Cowboys) 1 - Shane Tronc (Cowboys)
Brisbane Broncos: 30 Tries: Justin Hodges, Darren Lockyer, Tame Tupou(2), Darius Boyd Goals: Corey Parker 5/7 South Sydney Rabbitohs: 12 Tries: Paul Mellor, Nathan Merritt Goals: Nathan Merritt 2/2 Half time: Broncos 12-6 Venue: Suncorp Stadium Crowd: 20,816 Referee: Gavin Badger Leagueunlimited.com players of the match: 3 - Karmichael Hunt (Broncos) 2 - Justin Hodges (Broncos) 1 - Tame Tupou (Broncos)
Cronulla Sutherland Sharks: 24 Tries: Luke Covell, Brett Kimmorley, Beau Scott, David Simmons Goals: Luke Covell 4/4 Sydney Roosters: 28 Tries: Brett Finch, Amos Roberts, Anthony Tupou, Craig Wing, Ashley Harrison Goals: Craig Fitzgibbon 4/6 Half time: Roosters 16-0 Venue: Toyota Park Crowd: 12,331 Referee: Sean Hampstead Leagueunlimited.com players of the match: 3 - Craig Fitzgibbon (Roosters) 2 - Luke Covell (Sharks) 1 - Ashley Harrison (Roosters)
St George Illawarra Dragons: 6 Tries: Colin Best Goals: Aaron Gorrell 1/1 Newcastle Knights: 54 Tries: Danny Buderus, George Carmont(2), Kurt Gidley, Andrew Johns, Anthony Quinn, Milton Thaiday, Brian Carney, Riley Brown Goals: Andrew Johns 9/10 Half time: Knights 24-0 Venue: WIN Stadium Crowd: 17,367 Referee: Tony Archer Leagueunlimited.com players of the match: 3 - Andrew Johns (Knights) 2 - Danny Buderus (Knights) 1 - Kurt Gidley (Knights)
New Zealand Warriors: 8 Tries: Tony Martin(2) Goals: Tony Martin 0/2 Manly Sea Eagles: 22 Tries: Chris Hicks, Steve Bell(2) Goals: Matt Orford 5/5 Half time: Sea Eagles 20-0 Venue: Ericsson Stadium Crowd: 7,888 Referee: Russell Smith Leagueunlimited.com players of the match: 3 - Steve Bell (Sea Eagles) 2 - Matt Orford (Sea Eagles) 1 - Tony Martin (Warriors)
Canberra Raiders: 12 Tries: Todd Carney(2) Goals: Clinton Schifcofske 2/2 Canterbury Bulldogs: 30 Tries: Trent Cutler, Luke Patten, Andrew Ryan, Andrew Emelio Goals: Hazem El Masri 7/7 Half time: Bulldogs 16-0 Venue: Canberra Stadium Crowd: 12,125 Referee: Shayne Hayne Leagueunlimited.com players of the match: 3 - Hazem El Masri (Bulldogs) 2 - Mark O?Meley (Bulldogs) 1 - Willie Mason (Bulldogs)
Parramatta Eels: 18 Tries: Timana Tahu(2), Dean Widders, Zeb Taia Goals: Mark Riddell 1/2 Penrith Panthers: 44 Tries: Preston Campbell, Craig Gower, Luke Priddis, Shane Rodney, Rhys Wesser(2), Lee Hookey Goals: Preston Campbell 8/9 Half time: Eels 18-14 Venue: Parramatta Stadium Crowd: 14,194 Referee: Jason Robinson Leagueunlimited.com players of the match: 3 - Rhys Wesser (Panthers) 2 - Preston Campbell (Panthers) 1 - Trent Waterhouse (Panthers)
Melbourne Storm - Bye
FULL DRAW, RESULTS & LINKS TO LIVE SCORES ? CLICK HERE
Next weekend?s matches: Round 6, 14-16 April 2006 Fri 7:30 - ROOSTERS v BRONCOS - Aussie Stadium Sat 5:30 - SEA EAGLES v DRAGONS - Brookvale Oval Sat 7:00 (Ade) 7:30 (Syd) - PANTHERS v STORM - Hindmarsh Stadium SA Sat 7:30 - RAIDERS v WARRIORS - Canberra Stadium Sun 2:30 - TIGERS v SHARKS - Campbelltown Stadium Sun 3:00 - KNIGHTS v COWBOYS - EnergyAustralia Stadium Sun 3:00 - RABBITOHS v BULLDOGS - Telstra Stadium EELS v BYE
LEAGUEUNLIMITED.COM PLAYER AWARDS 2006 LEADER BOARD The Leagueunlimited.com players awards are decided by our live score updaters. Want to be a live score updater? For further enquiries, email us.
15 points Johnathan Thurston (Cowboys)
12 points Andrew Johns (Knights)
8 points Mark Gasnier (Dragons)
7 points Steve Bell (Sea Eagles)
5 points Adam Dykes (Sharks), Karmichael Hunt (Broncos), Matt Orford (Sea Eagles), Amos Roberts (Roosters)
3 points Danny Buderus (Knights), Craig Fitzgibbon (Roosters), Nathan Hindmarsh (Eels), Justin Hodges (Broncos), Ben Kennedy (Sea Eagles), Willie Mason (Bulldogs), Luke O'Donnell (Cowboys), Steve Price (Warriors), Milton Thaiday (Knights), Ruben Wiki (Warriors)
2 points Matthew Bowen (Cowboys), George Carmont (Knights), Luke Covell (Sharks), Cooper Cronk (Storm), Daniel Fitzhenry (Tigers), Greg Inglis (Storm), Josh Perry (Knights), Wade McKinnon (Eels), Anthony Minichiello (Roosters), Mark O'Meley (Bulldogs), Aaron Payne (Cowboys), Todd Polglase (Rabbitohs), Luke Priddis (Panthers), Scott Prince (Tigers), Matt Sing (Cowboys), Jason Smith (Raiders), Steven Southern (Cowboys), John Sutton (Rabbitohs), Brad Thorn (Broncos), Clinton Toopi (Warriors), Dean Young (Dragons)
Trent Barrett (Dragons), Paul Bowman (Cowboys), Michael Ennis (Broncos), Kurt Gidley (Knights), Matthew Gidley (Knights), Ashley Harrison (Roosters), Wairangi Koopu (Warriors), Tony Martin (Warriors), Steve Menzies (Sea Eagles), Brent Sherwin (Bulldogs), Billy Slater (Storm), Tim Smith (Eels), Brett Stewart (Sea Eagles), Shane Tronc (Cowboys), Anthony Tupou (Roosters), Tame Tupou (Broncos), Trent Waterhouse (Panthers), Lincoln Withers (Raiders), Simon Woolford (Raiders), William Zillman (Raiders)