SUNDAY SPECIALS | Two tight tussles for NRL Sunday - Melbourne Storm and Canberra Raiders flexing th...
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Manly 36 Brisbane 26
Friday 4:45pm, Suncorp Stadium
While Manly-Warringah maybe anchored to the bottom of the table with the Gold Coast, they didn't let that stop them put in a strong showing against former competition leaders Brisbane, whose NRL side is also in some sort of mid-season slump. The Sea Eagles led 24-16 at the break and went on with the job after halftime, leading 36-16 before the Broncos shot back - a treble to five-eighth Bryce Hegarty not enough to propel Brisbane to a win.
Sea Eagles 36 (Anderson, MacDougall, Faliuga, Liaina, Burrell, Annear, Taufa tries; Falaniko 2/4, Matthews 2/3 goals) def Broncos 26 (Hegarty 3, Binge, Frei tries; Frei 3/5 goals) at Suncorp Stadium. Referee: Peter Gough
Canterbury-Bankstown 26 Gold Coast 24
Saturday 1:15pm, The Crest Stadium, Bass Hill
Moved to the Bulldogs' NSW Cup home ground at Bass Hill due to the NRL double header, the Bulldogs felt right at home taking out a 26-24 over cellar-dwellers the Titans. A late rush from the visiting team wasn't enough as Canterbury defied their opposition as well as their own poor completion rate (just 18 from 36 sets at 50%) to win by two.
Bulldogs 26 (McCallum, Langi, Burr, Fitzpatrick tries; Langi 5/5 goals) def Titans 24 (Rankin 3, Beddow, Springer tries; Rankin 1/2, Springer 1/3 goals) at The Crest Stadium, Bass Hill. Referee: Ziggy Preklasa-Adamski
Parramatta 28 Newcastle 8
Saturday 3:15pm, Ausgrid Stadium, Newcastle
While their NRL counterparts played in one of the wettest games of the weekend, the Toyota Cup sides for this Eels v Knights showdown enjoyed relatively dry conditions. Parramatta's young livewire Marmin Barba continued to display some of the fine form that has helped the Eels push toward top 8 contention in recent weeks, scoring a double on the way to a 28-8 win over a Newcastle side fast falling out of the equation for a finals spot.
Eels 28 (Barba 2, O'Hanlon, Breust, Gagan tries; Breust 4/7 goals) def Knights 8 (Clacherty, Sullivan tries; Will Smith 0/2 goals) at Ausgrid Stadium. Referee: Chris James
Cowboys 22 Roosters 20
Saturday 5:15pm, Dairy Farmers Stadium, Townsville
The Cowboys showed worrying second-half form despite holding on for a two point win at home on Saturday night. The hosts led 22-6 heading into the final 15 minutes before a late flurry from the Roosters fell just short. The 22-20 victory keeps the Cowboys in the top four for another week.
Cowboys 22 (Koko, Parker Walshe, Grevsmuhl, Elisala tries; Feldt 3/4 goals) def Roosters 20 (O'Sullivan 2, Alofa, Moga tries; Alofa 1/2, Moga 0/1, Littlejohn 1/1 goals) at Dairy Farmers Stadium. Referee: Chris Anderson
Cronulla-Sutherland 42 Melbourne 28
Sunday 11:45am, AAMI Park, Melbourne
The Cronulla side came to Melbourne knowing a big task was ahead against the league leaders - but a spirited first-half effort propelled the visitors to a 24-10 halftime lead which the Storm could not match into the second half. The 7-tries-to-5 loss for the Storm sees them vacate first position, with the Warriors' bye points seeing them take that mantle on differential.
Sharks 42 (Walsh, Rasmussen, Frizell, Hijazi, Lichaa, Peacock, Moroko tries; Townsend 6/6, Duggan 1/1 goals) def Storm 28 (Hampton 2, Davies, Harris, Wilson tries; McGahan 4/5 goals) at AAMI Park. Referee: Dave Munro
Wests Tigers 34 St George Illawarra 22
Sunday 12:45pm, WIN Jubilee Oval, Kogarah
The Wests Tigers showed plenty of class to keep pace with the leading pack in the 2011 competition, exacting a 34-22 win over the Dragons at Kogarah on Sunday. A halftime lead of 18-10 was more than enough for the visiting side to go on with the job in the second half, although the Dragons did produce a two-try surge which had the Tigers on edge for a short period of time.
Tigers 34 (Begovich, Nafoaluma, Koroibete, Evans, Smith, Sue tries; Miller 5/6 goals) def Dragons 22 (De Belin, Grout, Bullock, McKinnon tries; Gillies 3/4 goals) at WIN Jubilee Oval. Referee: Michael Laverty
Penrith 18 South Sydney 16
Monday 4:45pm, Centrebet Stadium Penrith
A surprisingly lowscoring affair at the foot of the mountains saw the Panthers come from behind with ten minutes remaining. The hosts were down 16-8 as the clock wound down, but two late tries and a vital conversion from Blake Austin saw Penrith home, confining 2010 Grand Finalists South Sydney to 13th position for another week.
Panthers 18 (Austin, Moylan, Cook, Dengate tries; Austin 1/4 goals) def Rabbitohs 16 (Koroisau, Sisifa, Vale tries; French 2/3 goals) at Centrebet Stadium Penrith. Referee: Gavin Reynolds
Toyota Cup Ladder after Round 12
1. Warriors 20 (+192)
2. Storm 20 (+126)
3. Bulldogs 18 (+123)
4. Cowboys 18 (+95)
5. Sharks 17 (+66)
6. Tigers 16 (+64)
7. Broncos 14 (+98)
8. Raiders 14 (+78)
9. Eels 13 (+22)
10. Roosters 11 (-59)
11. Knights 10 (-52)
12. Panthers 10 (-152)
13. Dragons 9 (-100)
14. Rabbitohs 7 (-172)
15. Sea Eagles 6 (-125)
16. Titans 5 (-204)