Jeff Dickinson-Fox reviews the campaign which saw Melbourne Storm crowned premiers in 2017.
3 days ago
New Zealand Warriors 46 v South Sydney Rabbitohs 14
at Ericsson Stadium
Referees: Jason Robinson
Warriors Move in to the Positive
The New Zealand Warriors are off the mark in 2006 following a 46-14 hammering of the South Sydney Rabbitohs in Auckland tonight. The forwards led from the front from the first whistle with inspirational leaders, Ruben Wiki and Steven Price standing up and taking control.
Tony Martin kicked 9 from 9 and scored a try for a 22 point tally for the former Melbourne Storm star. This was a record for the most amount of points scored by a Warriors against a Rabbitoh in their short history as an NRL club.
The Warriors led 26-4 at the break after a point scoring spree in the last fifteen minutes before halftime. The game was left wide open after a tight open quarter but the game sprung to life after a try to Tony Martin against the run of play. The Rabbitohs were able to get one try back before the break through former Panther Ben Rogers but a penalty goal and a long range try to Brent Webb opened the game right up before the break.
The Rabbitohs lost Todd Polglase to a hamstring injury late in the first half but that didn?t stop them from coming out fired up for the second half. They ran in two quick tries just after the break to give themselves a sniff at 28-14.
However, with the great goforward of the Warriors forwards, they were able to run away with the game.
The Warriors now move in to positive territory on two points following their four point deduction as a result of a salary cap breach. They move off the bottom of the ladder which now means Souths sit in last place without a win. It won?t get any easier for the Bunnies as they take on Newcastle next weekend.
New Zealand Warriors: 46
Tries: Todd Byrne, Tony Martin, Steve Price, Brent Webb, Ruben Wiki(2), George Gatis
Goals: Tony Martin 9/9
South Sydney Rabbitohs: 14
Tries: John Sutton, Paul Mellor, Ben Rogers
Goals: Nathan Merritt 1/3
By the Clock:
There is 1 change for the Warriors tonight.Jerome Ropati moves to five-eight,Grant Rovelli goes back to the bench with Richard Villasanti dropping off the bench.Guttenbiel will go back to the bench with Luck promoted to the starting side.
For Souths,Germaine Paulson comes in for Adam Macdougall,Paul Mellor for Shannon Hegarty.Shannan McPherson drops off the bench.
A very small crowd in here,but that won't darken each sides efforts to take the 2 points out of this one.
1 min: NEWS Kickoff!
5 min: NEWS Michael Luck is hit in a bellringer from Shane Walker
5 min: NEWS Clinton Toopi is held up ingoal and it will be a play the ball on 0 tackle following a lead up play touched by Souths.
6 min: TRY New Zealand Warriors
Some poor goal line defence and Ruben Wiki from a standing start crashes over next to the posts.
Martin converts the try.
13 min: NEWS Souths are deep on the attack but Ben Walker lets his team down on the last tackle as his bomb sails well over the dead ball line.
16 min: NEWS Fien puts a kick down field and Merritt takes off with the ball.He finds Paulson who races down field,tries to find Merritt on his outside but the ball goes in to touch 30 metres out from the tryline.
17 min: TRY New Zealand Warriors
Ruben Wiki takes the tap from a penalty 30 metres out.He charges past the first line of defence before barging over the top of Polglase to score under the posts for his second try!
Martin converts the Wiki try.
22 min: NEWS Brent Webb is denied a try after Ropati throws a forward pass to him on the inside.
25 min: NEWS Going to the video for a possible Warriors try ...
25 min: TRY New Zealand Warriors
Tony Martin scoops up a grubber that rebounded off a player next to him.He picks it up and runs 50 metres to score under the posts.A question on whether he was offside.
Martin converts his own try.
28 min: TRY South Sydney Rabbitohs
Rogers gets one back for the Rabbits as he scores in the corner off a swift second man play.
Merritt from the touchline hooks it wide.
29 min: NEWS Faalogo drops the ball from the kickoff giving the Warriors a chance to hit back.
32 min: PENALTY GOAL New Zealand Warriors
Martin shoots over a penalty goal from right infront following a hold down penalty from Souths.
33 min: TRY New Zealand Warriors
A break by Gutenbiel on half way,he links up with Brent Webb who runs 40 metres to score under the posts.
Martin slots another one over from right infront.
35 min: NEWS After a mistake from the kickoff from the Warriors,Lowe tries to pop a pass on the first tackle for the Bunnies but the ball goes straight to Guttenbiel.
40 min: NEWS Halftime.
South Sydney have been horrible in defence in the first half.They have already missed 20 tackles and things like they will go from bad to worse.They have no respect for the football as they have had 8 errors in the first half.The Warriors however,despite not being flashy in the first half,they have got the job done so far with only 6 mistackles and 6 errors.
Warriors 61% - Rabbitohs 49 % Possession
41 min: NEWS Second Half underway and the Warriors kick out on the full from the kickoff!
42 min: NEWS With a gap opening,Merritt finds Walker who puts it down releasing all the pressure they had gained.
43 min: PENALTY GOAL New Zealand Warriors
Martin slots a penalty goal from right in front after an obstruction when a Fien bomb hit the turf.
46 min: NEWS Going upstairs for a possible Souths try.
46 min: TRY South Sydney Rabbitohs
Ben Walker,with nothing on puts a cross field grubber in for Paul Mellor who does extremely well to stay in as he scores in the corner.
Merritt's conversion is way off the mark.
51 min: NEWS The Bunnies deep on the attack from back to back penalties.
53 min: TRY South Sydney Rabbitohs
John Sutton barges over under the posts on tackle 5 following sustained pressure on the back of repeat sets of 6 from penalties.
Merritt converts his first of the night.
63 min: NEWS Souths have kept the Warriors out in attack very well in the 2nd half,thus giving themselves a slight chance of a comeback.
66 min: NEWS The Warriors get six more tackles on the Rabbitohs line.
67 min: TRY New Zealand Warriors
George Gatis dives over from dummy half to seal the game for the Warriors.
Martin keeps his good record in tact.
71 min: TRY New Zealand Warriors
Steve Price dives over from out wide off an offload close to the line.
Martin slots another one over.
78 min: TRY New Zealand Warriors
A great offload by Faumuina on the left hand side and Todd Byrne dives over to score which caps off a great night for the Warriors.
Martin's conversion from the sideline is a ripper.
80 min: NEWS Fulltime here in Auckland!
Leagueunlimited.com players of the match:
3 - Ruben Wiki
2 - Awen Guttenbeil
1 - Steve Price