The Sydney Roosters built a fortress at ANZ Stadium to hold out the Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs, 20-18 as a crowd of 20,275 watched on.
The Roosters' goal line defence through out the match caused frustrations for the Belmore boys as they struggled to get into the game.
The Bondi boys fired early as Kiwi centre Shaun Kenny-Dowall posted the first of two tries. His footwork and ball handling skills saw him cross the white-line after 6 minutes. Roosters 4-0.
Despite the mostly brick-wall defence from the Roosters, Ben Barba found a crack and darted through it. The Bulldogs hit the lead after 21 minutes, 6-4.
Roosters enforcer, Boyd Cornder in a rare sight crossed the chalk twice for the tri-colours. His first four-pointer came after 27 minutes as fill-in half Daniel Mortimer provided the short pass. The Roosters took a 10-6 lead into half time.
The second half saw two tries a-piece as the Bulldogs attempted to surge home in the final 10 minutes.
The man they call SKD (Shaun Kenny-Dowall) danced his way through the Bulldogs defence to claim his second four-pointer. The Canterbury side out on their feet as he made light work of the defenders.
Man of the Match, Boyd Cordner crossed for his second try of the outing, as once again Daniel Mortimer laid the platform for his second-rower to charge through the Bulldog pack. The Roosters with 20 minutes on the clock held a comfortable 20-6 lead.
In the final minute of the match, as Inu scored his try for the Bulldogs, Queensland Maroons 18th man Martin Kennedy sustained a knee injury in goal. The good news is he did walk to the sideline, although under the assistance of the medial team.
The boys from Bondi held strong in the end as the claimed victory, 20-18, over the Bulldogs. The Roosters managed to string the win together despite having Origin stars, James Maloney and Mitchell Pearce absent from the team sheet.
Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs 18 Sydney Roosters 20
Venue: Stadium Australia
Halftime Score: Sydney Roosters 10-6
LeagueUnlimited.com Players of the Match:
3 points - Boyd Cordner
2 points - Sonny Bill Williams
1 point - Roger Tuivasa-Sheck
CANTERBURY-BANKSTOWN BULLDOGS (18)
Tries: Ben Barba, Dene Halatau, Krisnan Inu
Conversions: Trent Hodkinson (3/3)
SYDNEY ROOSTERS (20)
Tries: Shaun Kenny-Dowall (2), Boyd Cordner (2)
Conversions: Daniel Mortimer (2/4)
LeagueUnlimited.com Live Commentary
TEAM NEWS is in and there is an interesting change for the Roosters. Sonny Bill Williams shifts to HALF BACK with Daniel Mortimer shifting to 5/8th. Mitchell Aubusson moves the centres.
Bulldogs: 1. Ben Barba 2. Mitch Brown 3. Timoteo Lafai 4. Krisnan Inu 5. Sam Perrett 6. Joel Romelo 7. Trent Hodkinson 8. Aiden Tolman 9. Michael Ennis 10. Sam Kasiano 11. Frank Pritchard 12. Tony Williams 13. Greg Eastwood Interchange: 15. Josh Jackson 16. James Graham 14. Dene Halatau 17. Dale Finucane
Roosters: 1. Anthony Minichiello 2. Daniel Tupou 6. Mitchell Aubusson 4. Shaun Kenny-Dowall 5. Roger Tuivasa-Sheck 7. Daniel Mortimer 12. Sonny Bill Williams 16. Sam Moa 9. Jake Friend 8. Luke O'Donnell 11. Boyd Cordner 16. Sam Moa 3. Aidan Guerra 13. Frank Paul Nuuausala Interchange: 10. Martin Kennedy 14. Nafe Seluini 15. Dylan Napa 17. Isaac Liu
Squads not yet loaded makes an unforced error.
Knock on call against Mitch Brown in goal. Roosters almost coming up with points. Line drop out
Scored by Shaun Kenny-Dowall. Conversion attempt by Daniel Mortimer unsuccessful.
Shaun Kenny-Dowall has reached around the Bulldogs defenders as he charged to the goal line to post first points of the night. Daniel Mortimer with the kicking duties tonight fails to extend the early lead with the conversion
Sydney Roosters 4-0
Jake Friend kicks a 40/20.
The touch judge calls a 40/20 for Jake Friend as Ben Barba was ruled to have taken the ball over the sideline as he juggled in the attempt to collect the Steeden
Scored by Ben Barba. Conversion attempt by Trent Hodkinson successful.
Ben Barba dummied his way through the line as he darted between defenders to race over for the Bulldogs first try of the night. Trent Hodkinson with the conversion from the sideline adds the extras. The Bulldogs take the lead for the first time with the kick at goal
Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs 6-4
Mitch Brown makes an unforced error.
Mitch Brown leaped for the bomb off the boot of Mortimer and dropped it cold. Zero tackle called for the Roosters, they attack 10 metres out
Scored by Boyd Cordner. Conversion attempt by Daniel Mortimer successful.
Boyd Cordner claims the Roosters second try of the night as he strolled over the goal line thanks to a pin-point short pass from Daniel Mortimer. Mortimer with the conversion adds the extras
Sydney Roosters 10-6
Roger Tuivasa-Sheck makes an unforced error.
Roger Tuivasa-Sheck is unable to take the long low pass from Minichiello on the wing, Scrum for the Bulldogs
Mitchell Aubusson makes an unforced error.
Mitchell Aubusson ruled to have played the ball in the tackle on Tony Williams. Scrum Bulldogs 30 metres out
Frank Pritchard makes an unforced error.
Frank Pritchard trying to earn a penalty in the ruck drops the ball as he fails to earn a penalty for the Roosters not clearly the ruck
Daniel Tupou makes an unforced error.
Daniel Tupou knocks down the ball as the Bulldogs looked to raid the blind side on the right. Scrum feed backs for the Bulldogs on 30 metre line
Dylan Napa makes an unforced error.
Dylan Napa looses possession in a tackle on halfway, Bulldogs clean up the ball and go back on the attack inside the Roosters half
Scored by Shaun Kenny-Dowall. Conversion attempt by Daniel Mortimer successful.
Shaun Kenny-Dowall is awarded his second try of the night as the Roosters cleaned up an offload attempt from Krisnan Inu. The Roosters darted through the Bulldogs defence easily and Roger Tuivasa-Sheck offloaded to Kenny-Dowall to race in. Daniel Mortimer with the conversion attempt added the extras
Sydney Roosters 16-6
Scored by Boyd Cordner. Conversion attempt by Daniel Mortimer unsuccessful.
Boyd Cordner claims his second try of the night as the Roosters spread it through Daniel Mortimer who provides a short pass for Cornder. The Bulldogs defence in all sorts tonight as the Roosters easily crack for points. Daniel Mortimers fails to convert for the Roosters
Sydney Roosters 20-6
Scored by Dene Halatau. Conversion attempt by Trent Hodkinson successful.
Dene Halatau has bolted straight into a hole in the Roosters goal line defence as Sam Kasiano provided the short pass. Trent Hodkinson quickly converted from right in front
Sydney Roosters 20-12
Daniel Tupou makes an unforced error.
Daniel Tupou knocks on taking the catch from the kick off Hodkinson. Scrum for the Bulldogs 10 metres out
Scored by Krisnan Inu. Conversion attempt by Trent Hodkinson successful.
Krisnan Inu reaches out and scores for the Bulldogs as he charged into the Roosters defence. Hodkinson makes it TWO points
Sydney Roosters 20-18