LEEDS Rhinos 20 (McGuire 2, Walker, Donald tries; Sinfield 2 goals) v Salford City Reds 12 (Hodgson, Langi, Finnigan tries). Att: 15,242Leeds Rhinos moved up to second place in the Engage Super League table with a hard fought victory over a gutsy Salford City Reds at Headingley Carnegie Stadium.In a close scoring first half when defences were on top, the Reds took the lead against the run of play when David Hodgson pounced on to a loose ball and raced 80 meters to score in the corner. On the stroke of half time, Leeds finally breached the Salford defence with a try by Scott Donald, after a good run and pass from Danny McGuire.The second half continued with the Rhinos camped out in the Salford 20 but after an initial Luke Robinson break, Junior Langi crashed over in the corner to put the Reds back in front. Leeds hit back immediately when Chev Walker scored a fine individual try. Then the Rhinos extended their lead with a McGuire try.Salford would not lie down and after slick passing, Simon Finnigan scored a try to put the Reds within two points of Leeds, but Hodgson once again missed the easy conversation that would have put the Reds level.Leeds continued to press, but Salford managed to hold out until a piece of individual brilliance from Great Britain stand-off Danny McGuire sealed the game for the hosts. The visitors showed why they are this season?s most improved team, if only David Hodgson would have had his kicking boots on, the Reds might have come away with a most unlikely victory.St Helens 38 (Meli 2, Gardner 2, Long, Cunningham, Pryce tries; Lyon 5 goals) v Bradford Bulls 16 (Hape 2, B. Harris tries; Deacon 2 goals). Att: 12,352St Helens maintained their 100% record with a convincing victory over the Bradford Bulls at Knowsley Road.Bradford came in to this game on an 18 match unbeaten run but after dominating the first quarter, they failed to make most of the pressure and had only a Ben Harris try to show for their efforts. After losing influential skipper Iestyn Harris with an arm injury, the Saints got on top and scored tries through Francis Meli, Shaun Long and Lyon Pryce, who scored against his old club. Just before half time Bradford made the most of the extra man, when Jason Hooper was in the sin-bin for a late tackle on Paul Deacon, with a Shontayne Hape try to reduce the hosts? lead to 16-12 at the break.The second half the Saints turned on the gas as they ran in four more tries to show that they are surely the odds on favourites to reach the Grand Final in October. Bradford were a well-beaten side but they did mange to score the last try through Shontayne Hape. Saints victory came at a cost with a serious injury to Great Britain full-back Paul Wellins, who is expected to miss the next six weeks with a fractured cheekbone.Warrington Wolves 26 (Clarke, Westwood, Kohe-Love, Fa?afili, Bridge tries; Briers 3 goals) v Catalans Dragons 28 (Murphy 2, Texido, Bosc, Fellous tries; Dobson 4 goals). Att: 9,631Catalans Dragons turned the formbook upside down and gave new coach Mike Potter a great start with a shock victory over the Warrington Wolves at the Halliwell-Jones Stadium. The visitors came into this match after conceding 108 points in their last two home games and started well pinning Warrington back in their own half, but against the run of play John Clarke scored the opening try for the Wolves. The lead was short lived as the Dragons roared back with three tries two from Justin Murphy, Thomas Bosc and Lionel Teixido plus two conversions by Mick Dobson to lead 16-6. However, on the stroke of half time, Chris Bridge scored for the Wolves to cut the deficit to 6 points at 16-10.Warrington charged back with three tries in the second half through Henry Fa?afili, his eighth of the season, Ben Westwood, after a great pass from ex Shark Michael Sullivan, Toa Kohe-Love who danced through and with two conversions from Lee Briers the Wolves led 26-16.Under the guidance of man of the match, Julien Rinaldi, the Dragons stormed back and scored two tries through a second for Murphy and Adel Fellous. Mick Dobson converted both tries and Catalans led 28-26 with minutes left. Warrington tried to get back in front but the visitors held them out to register their first every away victory in the Engage Super League.Castleford Tigers 38 (Pryce 2, Platt, Handforth, Kain, Fa?aoso tries; Handforth, Kain 5 goals). Wigan Warriors 18 (O?Loughlin 2, Richards tries; Orr, Tickle 2 goals). Att: 9,021Wigan?s losing run continued after their were soundly beaten by the Castleford Tigers at the Jungle. The Warriors got off to a dream start and raced into a 12-0 lead thanks to a brace through skipper Sean O?Loughlin, both set up by ex Tiger Danny Orr.With the introduction of Danny Ward, the home team got themselves back into the game with a Wayne Pryce try, but it could have been even better for the hosts as they had two tries disallowed for off-side and a knock-on. Wigan held on for 12-6 lead at the break. Castleford changed gear in the second half and with the help of some mistakes by the visitors they scored four tries in the first 20 minutes to lead 30-12. Wigan did manage to cut the lead to 12 points with a Pat Richards try, after collecting Denis Moran?s cross-field kick.But, Pryce crossed again in the closing stages, with Kain's conversion and a last-minute penalty from Handforth rubbing salt in the Warriors' gaping woundsHuddersfield Giants 64 (Evans 2, Gardner 2, Thorman 2, Donlan, Paul, Wild, Torrens, Crabtree tries; Thorman 10 goals) v Harlequins RL 14 (Hartley, Luisi tries; Gafa 3 goals). Att: 4,173Huddersfield ran in 11 tries as they thrashed a poor Harlequins side at the Galpharm Stadium. Quins, whose points came following early tries by Tim Hartley and Zebastian Luisi as well as three kicks by Matt Gafa, were abysmal in the second half.Their performance made a mockery of their opening two away games this season, which had seen them beat Hull and draw at Bradford. The hosts lead 22-14 at the break and then ran in 7-second half tries to thoroughly outclass their opponents.Huddersfield were lead around the park by their two half-backs, effervescent Robbie Paul and Chris Thorman - who contributed 28 points.Wakefield Wildcats 20 (Tadulala 2, Elima, Demetriou tries; Rooney 2 goals) v Hull FC 28 (Raynor, Carvell, King, Yeaman, Whiting tries; Brough, Cook 3 goals). Att: 5,613Hull ended their loosing run of three matches with an unconvincing win over bottom team Wakefield Wildcats at Belle Vue.Wakefield led 10-0 with tries from Semi Tadulala and Oliver Elima before losing their talisman David Solomona, who limped off after 20 minutes. Richard Whiting and Kirk Yeaman crossed to give Hull a half time lead. Garreth Carvell added another try after the break to extend the advantage.Tries from Tadulala and Jason Demetriou put Wakefield back in contention. However, Hull hung on to their lead with some good scrambling defence and gave themselves some breathing space on 60 minutes when Paul King went over. Gareth Raynor confirmed the win on the 75th minute, marking his return from injury with a try after collecting Cooke's looping pass.
BUSINESSMAN Peter Holmes A Court will today begin the onerous task of reviving South Sydney after the NRL club's members yesterday gave the go ahead to his $3 million buyout with Russell Crowe.Holmes A Court will officially take over as Souths chairman from Nick Pappas on May 1 but, after being given a mandate by the members, has vowed to waste no time getting down to work. Needing a 75 per cent majority for the proposal to go through, Holmes A Court and Crowe achieved 75.8 per cent of the vote yesterday, with a mere 32 votes deciding the outcome.Holmes A Court and Crowe acquired 75 per cent of the club as part of the deal, which will also see them select four of the eight South Sydney board members.Meanwhile, South Sydney patriarch George Piggins has vowed never to attend another Rabbitohs NRL match after yesterday's historic members' vote in favour of the Peter Holmes A Court-Russell Crowe privatisation proposal. Piggins says he is at the stage of his life where he would rather look after his other interests.The former Rabbitohs chairman and coach says he will never be seen at a football game again. Piggins had been an outspoken opponent of the buyout bid. Crowe says he is saddened by Piggins' remarks, and will talk to him in an attempt to change his mind.
ANOTHER tremendous weekend of rugby league football. Kicking off proceedings were the Bulldogs with a big 47-12 win over premiers Wests Tigers on Friday night. The round concluded with last year?s wooden spooners the Knights putting 70 points on the Raiders, but conceding 32 points for a record match blow-out of 102 points.
ADAM Starr may have lost the captaincy role late in the piece, but that didn?t stop him leading by example as Redcliffe accounted for Ipswich 34-12 at QLD Group Stadium on Saturday.
MEMBERS of the St.George Leagues Club can vote from 10 am tomorrow (Monday, March 20th) in the St.George Board elections. Voting is between Monday and Thursday - 10 am to 8 pm. R2K has endorsed three candidates to fill three vacancies on the St.George Leagues Club Board of Directors.The three R2K endorsed candidates are: Troy FeliceNick StojanovskiJames YoungThe candidates espouse the following policies:* Increase of OKI Jubilee Stadium capacity to in excess of 20,000. * Immediate focus on the reopening of the auditorium and overhaul of Club entertainment.* Full interest to be charged to the Illawarra Steelers on the $8.29 million loan, thus gaining St.George Leagues Club members an additional $398,000+ worth of interest credits per annum. When the $6.5 million WIN payment is made, the candidates support full interest being charged on the remaining loan balance.* 10% Member discount extended from all meal purchases to all drinks purchases.* Maintaining and enhancing the standard of dining, gambling, service and sports screenings.* Improved facilities for social and sporting clubs.* Restructure of Member benefits.The ballot for Directors will be conducted at the Club premises and will be open from 10am to 8pm from Monday, March 20 to Thursday, March 23 2006. R2K urges supporters to vote for the above candidates to ensure that the Dragons have a bright future in the St.George District. For additional information on the campaign, please [email protected]
IAN Millward remains upbeat as he prepares to take his Wigan side to Castleford on Sunday seeking their first away win of the season.
WAKEFIELD have goalkicking stand-off Jamie Rooney back from injury as they look to prevent Hull completing the first double of the season at Belle Vue on Sunday.
HARLEQUINS will be hoping to take their impressive away form into their clash with Huddersfield at the Galpharm Stadium on Sunday.
ROUND 2Newcastle Knights 70 def Canberra Raiders 32Match summary:The Newcastle Knights have scored an astounding 70-32 victory over the Canberra Raiders in a contest where defence went the way of the Dinosaurs.The game is now a record for the most points scored in a game of rugby league, beating St George?s 91-6 victory over Canterbury in round 5, 1935.As usual, Andrew Johns played a huge part in the game, scoring a personal tally of 30 points via 2 tries and 11 goals from 12 attempts. He directed play all day long and continually troubled the Raiders line-up in hot conditions at Canberra Stadium.The Raiders showed some steel early, taking the lead in the 4th minute through rookie fullback William Zillman who was deputising for injured captain Clinton Schifcofske. As the Knights got themselves into the game though, the signs weren?t all that encouraging for the home team.The back-row for Newcastle dominated again along with centre George Carmont and five-eighth Kurt Gidley each bagging two tries. Whilst the Raiders managed to get on the board twice in the first half they were simply swamped by the visitors who raced to a 34-8 halftime lead, rendering the game over.The second half saw no let up in attack from Newcastle and likewise no starch in defence from either team reared its? head. Canberra made a brief fight-back to get the scoreline to 34-20 in the 46th minute, but normal transmission returned shortly after and the Knights continued their dominance, plundering Canberra?s line time and again before the final bell sounded.It?s an incredibly strange scoreline and one that suggests both teams need some real work on the tackle bags at training this week. It?s hard to imagine that the Raiders can score 32 points and still manage to get walloped, let alone that 102 points in total can be carded on one afternoon of footy. I hope the stadium officials down in Canberra make sure the scoreboard attendant gets some work on his shoulders in the post-game warm down from the physio?s. Whilst both sides can obviously score points I wouldn?t consider this a great advertisement for the game. Next week the Knights take on the Bulldogs in what should be a more even display of footy.And Canberra face the Roosters at Aussie Stadium where both clubs will be looking to hit back after losses this week.Live commentary:Canberra Raiders: 32Tries: Phillip Graham(2), Troy Thompson, Alan Tongue, William Zillman(2)Goals: Todd Carney 4/4Newcastle Knights: 70Tries: George Carmont(2), Kurt Gidley(2), Matthew Gidley, Andrew Johns(2), Todd Lowrie, Anthony Quinn, Steve Simpson, Reegan Tanner, Daniel TolarGoals: Andrew Johns 11/12Canberra StadiumReferee: Jason RobinsonTerrific conditions for League in the Nation's Capital today. The home team have to be specials, with the ACT celebrating Canberra Day tomorrow.And we're underway in the first half!4 min: TRY Canberra RaidersThe Raiders get on the board early through some great work from Zillman. Conversion unsuccessful from Withers.Raiders 4-09 min: TRY Newcastle KnightsThe Knights hit back through Carmont to take the lead from the home side. Johns converts.Knights 6-415 min: NEWS Plenty of ball movement and great action here.20 min: TRY Newcastle KnightsThe Knights push further ahead through Johns here as they begin to wear down the Raiders. Johns converts.Knights 12-425 min: TRY Canberra RaidersCanberra score again to get back into the game via Phil Graham. Conversion unsuccessful from Withers.Knights 12-827 min: TRY Newcastle KnightsThe Knights run another one in (Johns again) and they're taking hold of the match in the first half. Johns fails to convert.Knights 16-830 min: TRY Newcastle KnightsAnother try to the Knights from Carmont. They are looking very menacing here today. Conversion successful from Johns.Knights 22-835 min: TRY Newcastle KnightsRubbing salt into the wounds here in the nation's capital as the Kurt Gidley puts the Raiders to the sword with another try. Conversion successful from Johns.Knights 28-838 min: TRY Newcastle KnightsThe visitors cap off a great half with a try close to half time (Kurt Gidley again). Conversion successful from Johns.Knights 34-840 min: NEWS It's not great news here at Canberra Stadium for the Raiders as the Knights are dominating proceedings. We'll need a real turnaround here if Canbera Day is to be celebrated.41 min: NEWS And we're underway in the second half!42 min: TRY Canberra RaidersThe Raiders strike back early through Zillman to bring some morale back into the side. Conversion successful from Carney who has taken over the kicking duties.Knights 34-1446 min: TRY Canberra RaidersThe Raiders are starting the second stanza on fire as Phil Graham goes in for another meat pie just after the break. Conversion successful from Carney.Knights 34-2050 min: TRY Newcastle KnightsThe Knights take the upper hand again with another converted try (Quinn). They are looking more in control of the game now after the Raiders briefly held the run of play. Johns converts.Knights 40-2055 min: TRY Newcastle KnightsAnother try, this time to Lowrie, as the Knights begin to completely dominate here. Conversion successful from Johns.Knights 46-2060 min: TRY Newcastle KnightsThe Knights are running rings around them now with Tanner scoring. Johns converts easily.Knights 52-2065 min: TRY Canberra RaidersAnother try to Canberra via Troy Thompson. Conversion successful from Carney.Knights 52-2670 min: TRY Newcastle KnightsDefence has well and truly gone out the window, with the game resembling a touch footy contest. Matt Gidley is on the board, conversion successful from Johns.Knights 58-2673 min: TRY Newcastle KnightsNewcastle in again through Daniel Tolar and the try is converted by Johns. A huge score down here. Knights 64-2675 min: TRY Canberra RaidersIt's tit-for-tat as Tongue picks up a consolation try for the Raiders. Conversion from Carney successful. Knights 64-3279 min: TRY Newcastle KnightsAnother try to the Knights (Steve Simpson) in what should be today's last. Conversion successful from Johns.Knights 70-3280 min: NEWS What a game. Unbelievable scoreline.-----------------------------------------Leagueunlimited.com players of the match:3 - Andrew Johns (Knights)2 - George Carmont (Knights)1 - William Zillman (Raiders)-----------------------------------------
FULLTIME score:Round 2Sydney Roosters 18 v Melbourne Storm 22Match summary:The Sydney Roosters have staged a remarkable comeback this afternoon, but it wasn?t quite enough to defeat the Melbourne Storm in a cliff-hanger today at Aussie Stadium, the Storm winning the match 22-18 on a warm Sydney afternoon.Melbourne came firing off the blocks in the first half, and took a 16-0 lead into halftime, a lead which was almost extended right on the break with Storm winger Jake Webster failing to keep his feet in play, crashing over the sideline and the margin remained at 16 at the interval. The Roosters then staged a remarkable second half fight-back. After trailing 22-0 midway through the half, the Roosters crossed for three converted tries in quick time, and were an Anthony Minichiello mistake away from claiming victory. The Australian fullback put a regulation pass to ground and granted the Storm a massive reprieve. Ball control was a problem for the Bondi club all afternoon, and in retrospect, the Roosters should have won this match according to the number of chances they squandered, in comparison to the end margin of just four points. Melbourne went into their shells during the second half and were remarkably lucky to hang on after a scanty performance towards the end of the match. But otherwise the Storm were consummate in victory, with an excellent platform laid down by their forwards which enabled their skilled backline of Billy Slater, Greg Inglis and Jake Webster to wreak havoc on a shaky Roosters defensive line.The Storm had to battle with 16 men for the majority of the match, former Rooster Michael Crocker was forced to leave the field in the 24th minute with a suspected nasal injury. This may have contributed to their lacklustre finish to the match.The Roosters? performance was far inferior to that of last week?s effort against Souths, new buys Braith Anasta and Ashley Harrison appeared to be non-existent out on the field today. Last year?s demons appear to have followed the Roosters into 2006, and they need to look at bringing Craig Wing into the starting side for Brett Finch, Finch seeming to hinder the Roosters attacking structure and is again trying to get too involved when players of far more quality, Anasta and Harrison, are virtual ghosts.The one shining light for the Roosters today was Jamie Soward, and he appears to have a mortgage on the number seven jumper.Matt King was earlier ruled out for Melbourne, causing concern for management who simply can?t afford to have him ruled out of action for a long period.Sam Perrett was sent to the sin bin in just the 4th minute for the Roosters, but there were no reports to speak of from this game.Melbourne have had a pleasing start to 2006 with two victories from two starts, both away from home. The Roosters have been very patchy and it looks as though the men from Bondi have some cobwebs to sweep out of the closet, similarly to last season after the loss of Brad Fittler. Scorers:Sydney Roosters: 18Tries: Ryan Cross, Amos Roberts, Jamie SowardGoals: Craig Fitzgibbon 3/3Melbourne Storm: 22Tries: Cooper Cronk, Ryan Hoffman, Greg Inglis, Steve TurnerGoals: Cameron Smith 3/4Venue: Aussie StadiumCrowd: 10,841Referee: Tony ArcherHalf time: Storm 16-0Live commentary:0 min: NEWS Today sees a rejuvenated Sydney Roosters side minus the suspended Adrian Morley up against a much-improved Melbourne Storm outfit, minus Matt King, at Aussie Stadium on a hot March afternoon in Sydney.Changes: Roosters: as-per-programStorm: Steve Turner comes off the bench into the centres for the injured Matt King, Jamie Feeney comes into the side onto the interchange bench.KICKOFF!, match underway at Aussie Stadium in Sydney4 min: NEWS Sam Perret sent to the sin bin for a professional foul close to the Roosters line.9 min: TRY Melbourne StormGreg Inglis capitalises on a brilliant cross-field kick from Storm halfback Cooper Cronk, taking advantage of his superior height to Iosia Soliola. Storm 4-014 min: NEWS Billy Slater denied a try by on-field officials, ruling to have attempted a double movement and is penalised accordingly. Meanwhile, Sam Perrett has returned from the sin bin.20 min: TRY Melbourne StormMelbourne have capitalised on a Roosters mistake from the play-the-ball, with Jake Webster moving the ball quickly to Steve Turner for a try in the corner. Storm 10-028 min: NEWS The Roosters have an abysmal completion rate at the moment with no cohesion in their attack. Brett Finch is assuming a halfback-type role at the moment with Jamie Soward rarely getting his hands on the ball, and this appears to be affecting their overall structure.34 min: NEWS NO TRY: Finch loses control of the ball over the line off a crafty Soward grubber kick.36 min: TRY Melbourne StormSoward makes a defensive error, sprinting out of the defensive line in an attempt to effect an intercept, the Cooper Cronk pass found the arms to a dashing Ryan Hoffman who subseqeuntly scores in the corner. Storm 16-040 min: NEWS HALFTIME: A possible Jake Webster try is denied right on halftime, with the video referee referring the decision back to referee Tony Archer who in-turn ruled Webster's foot to be over the sideline when he had grounded the ball. Despite the disallowed try, the Storm still hold a commanding 16-point lead and the Roosters will need to improve thier completion rate remarkably in order to have any chance in the second half. 40 min: NEWS Michael Crocker has sustained a depressed nasal fracture and will be out for the rest of this match. The Storm will have to manage with 16 players.Second half underway at Aussie Stadium in Sydney.47 min: NEWS NO TRY: Cameron Smith ruled to have knocked the ball forward in the in-goal area off his own grubber kick by the video referee. Still the Storm leading 16-0 and in reasonable control of this match.50 min: TRY Melbourne StormCooper Cronk races from a Storm scrum win to score a regulation try under the posts from just 10 metres out. The Storm now hold a commanding 22-0 lead and there's no way back for the Roosters now even with 30 minutes still remaining. Storm 22-058 min: TRY Sydney RoostersCraig Fitzgibbon takes an intercept 30 metres out from his own line and links up with Jamie Soward, culminating in a length of the field try for the new and improved Roosters halfback. Storm 22-662 min: TRY Sydney RoostersLooks as though I spoke too soon as Amos Roberts pounces on a cross-field kick from Jamie Soward, one which four Storm players made no attempt to catch, and grounds the ball for a try. Roosters making a comeback with ample time remaining for them to pull this one out of the fire. Storm 22-1270 min: NEWS Melbourne hanging on by the skin of their teeth at the moment, the Roosters are looking very dangerous with the likes of Anasta and Minichiello wreaking havoc.74 min: NEWS The Roosters look to have blown their last opportunity to mount an unbelievable fightback with a Soward grubber going straight into the arms of Billy Slater. The Storm should hang on with the score still at 22-12.77 min: TRY Sydney RoostersRyan Cross scores under the posts after another break by Soward from the Roosters half, and we have a grandstand finish here. An incredible comeback from the Roosters and one last opportunity to complete what would be a remarkable comeback. Storm 22-1878 min: NEWS The Storm have kicked the ball out on the full from the restart. The Roosters will receive a penalty at the halfway line and now have a real opportunity to steal this one!79 min: NEWS Minichiello's hands let him down yet again, putting the ball to ground and with just 40 seconds left that looks to be the ball game. The Storm look as though they will hang on, just.F/T: NEWS After a nail-biting second half, the Melbourne Storm have hung on by a thread to defeat the Sydney Roosters by 22 points to 18 this afternoon at Aussie Stadium in Sydney. The Storm held the ascendancy for the whole of the first half and early in the second, but the Roosters were so close to pulling off one of the best comebacks in the modern era until Anthony Minichiello put the ball to ground with just seconds remaining, giving the Storm a much-needed reprieve and a satisfying win away from home.-----------------------------------------Leagueunlimited.com players of the match:3 - Cameron Smith (Storm)2 - Cooper Cronk (Storm)1 - Jamie Soward (Roosters)-----------------------------------------
ROUND 2Penrith Panthers 13 def St George Illawarra 12Match summary:The Penrith Panthers have recorded their second victory of the season with a one-point win over perennial slow-starters St George Illawarra in extra time by 13-12.It is the first time in more than 15 years (round 1, 1991) that Penrith have won at Wollongong.Preston Campbell was the villain turned hero after he snapped a field goal in the 84th minute to get the Panthers home after he struggled throughout the match to find form. The match, played in hot conditions, was punctuated by 22 penalties and a mountain of handling errors. Frank Puletua and Ben Hornby were each sin-binned throughout the clash, with Puletua?s somewhat controversial considering it was for a high shot on Dragons lock Andrew Price shortly before halftime. Price left the field heavily concussed and failed to return.At halftime the scores were locked at 2-all following both sides? inability to turn possession into tries, with Gorrell and Campbell each kicking a penalty goal.The second half was a little different as man of the match Craig Gower came into his own. The Penrith playmaker laid on a try for captain Tony Puletua in the 47th minute and another for fullback Rhys Wesser 15 minutes later as the Panthers began to take control of the match and pushed their lead out to 12-2.The Dragon?s suffered a further blow midway through the second half as Australian prop Luke Bailey left the field with a knee injury. The home side rallied however and a try to Reece Simmonds out wide in the 72nd minute saw the scores at 12-6 and setup a tense final few minutes.St George Illawarra didn?t disappoint as the previously dour struggle turned rather exciting with hooker Gorrell putting Ashton Sims over next to the posts. With the successful conversion, the Dragons pushed the game into extra time.The Panthers started the third period on fire and were looking the goods early with Tony Puletua denied a try in the 83rd minute. From the ensuing play Campbell snapped the ball between the sticks and sunk the Dragons hopes of pulling the game out of the fire.The Panthers now head into the bye with 2 wins from 2 starts, defying critics of the club who had them in the reckoning for the wooden spoon. Ironically, premiership favourites the Dragons continue to slide down the ladder and face the Rabbitohs next week at Telstra Stadium.Scorers:St George Illawarra Dragons: 12Tries: Reece Simmonds, Ashton SimsGoals: Aaron Gorell 2/3Penrith Panthers: 13Tries: Tony Puletua, Rhys WesserGoals: Preston Campbell 2/3Field Goals: Preston CampbellWIN StadiumReferee: Shayne HayneLive commentary:Nice and warm day down in picturesque Wollongong. The Dragons will run with the wind in the first half, as Ryles leads the team out in his 100th game. Penrith will kick-off through Preston Campbell.And we're underway in the first half!5 min: NEWS Both teams sorting each other out in the early stages here, with the Dragons going close to scoring through Gorrell and Greenshields.7 min: NEWS Handling errors from both sides marring the contest in the early stages.15 min: NEWS Gower held-up in goal. Penrith receive a penalty 10m out from the Dragons line and continue to press their defence.22 min: NEWS Another try disallowed by the video referee, with the Danny Galea having no luck from the man upstairs.25 min: NEWS Still no score here at WIN Stadium. Both teams really into the contest now.30 min: NEWS A Dragons raid ends in misery with handling errors and poor options costing them.35 min: NEWS Frank Puletua in the bin and on report for a high shot after a string of sloppy plays. Andrew Price for the Dragons taken from the field.38 min: PENALTY GOAL St George Illawarra DragonsFollowing on from the high shot, Gorrell slots a penalty and finally opens the scoring for the day.Dragons 2-039 min: PENALTY GOAL Penrith PanthersA penalty to the Panthers sees them level the scores with a return penalty goal. 2 all.40 min: NEWS Halftime: Both sides playing very scrappy football. The Panthers have had the majority of possession but have been unable to score any tries. Obviously the heat is playing a big part in the proceedings. The real talking point has been Puletua's sin-binning for foul play. It's anyone's game from here, but if possession evens up you'd have to think the Dragons would be a chance.41 min: And we're underway in the second half!43 min: NEWS Hornby in the bin for a professional foul. Andrew Price is heavily concussed.47 min: TRY Penrith PanthersWith the Dragons down to 12 men, Gower jinks and dummies before giving a pass to Tony Puletua who scores. Conversion unsuccessful. Panthers 6-253 min: NEWS Hornby back on the field.55 min: NEWS Bailey has left the field with a knee injury.62 min: TRY Penrith PanthersCraig Gower again takes control of the game and finds Wesser running into a yawning gap. The Dragons are out on their feet. Campbell converts. Panthers 12-270 min: NEWS Ten to go and the signs are pretty positive for the Panthers. They're playing much better footy now and starting to create opportunities.72 min: TRY St George Illawarra DragonsReece Simmonds scores in the corner after getting on the end of a Dean Young cut-out pass. Gorrell fails to convert from the sideline. Panthers 12-678 min: TRY St George Illawarra DragonsYoung hooker George Ndaira finds some room and puts Ashton Sims over next to the post. Gorrell converts to lock up the game. 12 all80 min: NEWS We've gone into extra time here at WIN Stadium, where the Dragons are making a late charge for their first premiership points.84 min: FIELD GOAL Penrith PanthersPreston Campbell snaps a field goal to sink the Dragons and claim the points for the Panthers. Panthers 13-12-----------------------------------------Leagueunlimited.com players of the match:3 - Craig Gower (Panthers)2 - Preston Campbell (Panthers)1 - Aaron Gorrell (Dragons)-----------------------------------------
THE members of the South Sydney Football club today upheld an offer from Peter Holmes a Court and Russell Crowe to purchase 75% of the club for $3m. The "YES" vote received 75.8% support from members.The bid is designed to enable Holmes a Court and Crowe to manage the club under their own steam and control the board of directors whilst protecting the club?s history, colours, emblem and location.Some 4,500 fans participated in the vote with several thousand fans converging on Telstra Stadium where the count was taken and votes collated. It brings to an end a bitter battle for the club whose poor form on the field has been mirrored by mismanagement off it for over 15 years.
ROUND 2 North Queensland Cowboys 20 def. Manly Sea Eagles 16 Match summary:The North Queensland Cowboys have held on to defeat Manly Sea Eagles 20-16 in Townsville tonight.The Cowboys opened the scoring after nine minutes when winger Matt Sing crossed for the first of his three tries.The Sea Eagles struck back in the 17th minute through winger Steve Bell.But two more tries to the Cowboys, including a decisive blow from halfback Brett Firman, gave the North Queenslanders a handy 16-4 lead at half time.The second half stated disastrously for Cowboys forward Aaron Payne who went down after a head knock. He was assisted from the field in a neck brace but was reportedly regaining movement later that evening.The Cowboys went up another gear through Matt Bowen, the fullback kicking the first 40/20 of season in the 44th minute and putting the home side on the attack. A minute later Manly veteran Steve Menzies was sin binned for dissent and a minute after that, Sing posted his hat trick to give the Cowboys a commanding 20-4 lead.Nevertheless, despite enjoying the bulk of possession and field position, the Cowboys were unable to put their opponents away. Manly produced an outstanding defensive effort and on this foundation, launched their comeback.Tries to fullback Brett Stewart in the 51st and 62nd minutes got the Sea Eagles within four points and with over 15 minutes to go, the visitors had the momentum going their way. The Cowboys responded with repeat sets but were unable to breach the Manly line.With time running out, the Sea Eagles launched one final assault - the Cowboys holding on and taking the points in a nail-biting finish.Scorers:North Queensland Cowboys: 20Tries: Matt Sing (3), Brett FirmanGoals: Johnathan Thurston 2/6Manly Sea Eagles: 16Tries: Brett Stewart (2), Steve BellGoals: Matt Orford 2/3Dairy Farmers StadiumReferee: Paul Simpkins Live Commentary:Big crowd in Townsville for tonight's clash. Kick off soon...Players coming onto the field. A number of changes for both sides including Manly's Steve Menzies who has been moved to the centres.Kick off!9 min: NEWS Video ref checking possible Cowboys try.9 min: TRY North Queensland CowboysMatt Sing gets the nod from the video ref after getting benefit of the doubt on a possible offside call. Cowboys having the early momentum. Try scored out wide and the conversion from Johnathan Thurston is a ripper. Cowboys 6-014 min: NEWS Video ref checking possible Manly try.VERDICT: NO TRY.Knock on and scrum.15 min: NEWS At the other end of the field as the Cowboys counter attack. Video ref checking possible Cowboys try.VERDICT: NO TRY.Knock on against Ty Williams.17 min: TRY Manly Sea EaglesWinger Steve Bell scores out wide after Manly cuts through the defence down the left side. In the next movement, they have an overlap on the right and Bell is on hand to score. Orford's conversion attempt hits the upright and is waved away. Cowboys 6-423 min: TRY North Queensland CowboysSing gets a double out wide. Follows an intercept and 50m run from Justin Smith, putting the Manly defence on the back foot. Conversion attempt hits the upright and is unsuccessful. Cowboys 10-428 min: NEWS Injury to Cowboys forward Aaron Payne, copping a knock in the head. He is taken off on a medicab in a neck brace.29 min: ATTEMPTED PENALTY GOAL North Queensland CowboysThurston unsuccessful with penalty goal attempt. Cowboys 10-437 min: TRY North Queensland CowboysHalfback Brett Firman steps through and then forces his way over next to the posts. Thurston converts. A killer blow for the Sea Eagles just before half time. Cowboys 16-439 min: NEWS Manly forward Shane Dunley on report after a lifting tackle on Steve Southern. Southern's momentum carrying his legs northwards.HALF TIME: Cowboys 16-4Cowboys with more possession, more completions and less errors. Manly with all the work to do.Second half underway...43 min: NEWS Aaron Payne reportedly taken to hospital with a bit of numbness in the neck. However he does have movement.44 min: NEWS Cowboys fullback Matt Bowen kicks a 40/20, the first one of 2006.45 min: NEWS Manly centre Steve Menzies SIN BINNED for back chatting the referee.46 min: TRY North Queensland CowboysSing gets a hat trick. His 150th career try. Simple catch and pass and the Cowboys have the numbers. Sing crosses and improves the position for Thurston who hooks it away. Cowboys 20-451 min: TRY Manly Sea EaglesBrett Stewart takes the final pass to score after a classy 60m movement from Manly beginning with Steve Bell who found Chris Hicks in support. Orford conversion is OK. Cowboys 20-1058 min: NEWS Cowboys pressing after receiving a penalty following a bit of a dust-up. In other news Matt Sing has apparently left the field after receiving a knock.61 min: NEWS Video Ref looking at possible Manly try.62 min: TRY Manly Sea EaglesBrett Stewart gets benefit of the doubt, scoring in the corner just before going into touch. Follows Cowboys error which put Manly on the attack. Tremendous kick from Orford and conversion is successful. Cowboys 20-1665 min: ATTEMPTED PENALTY GOAL North Queensland CowboysManly penalised for play-the-ball infringement. Kick is from 15m out and 15m in from touch, and Thurston misses. Cowboys 20-1675 min: NEWS Cowboys forward Shane Tronc HELD UP. Great defence from Manly holding out Cowboys for two sets after Menzies knocks on in front of the sticks. Outstanding effort but time is running out for the Sea Eagles.In other news, Manly's Brett Stewart is limping badly.76 min: NEWS Cowboys get the ball back and Ty Wlliams is HELD UP - Manly defend in tremendous fashion once again.80 min: NEWS Cowboys get the points, hanging on to win 20-16. Manly had one last throw of the dice with a set at the Cowboys line. Manly played approximately 65% of the game in the own half and had around 40% of possession. But despite this, they put in a good showing in the latter stages. -----------------------------------------Leagueunlimited.com players of the match:3 - Johnathan Thurston (Cowboys)2 - Luke O'Donnell (Cowboys)1 - Brett Stewart (Sea Eagles)-----------------------------------------
NEW Catalans Dragons head coach Mick Potter is confident his side can lift themselves off the bottom of the table.
ROUND 2Brisbane Broncos 16 def. Cronulla Sharks 12Match summary:The Brisbane Broncos have come from behind late in the match to defeat the Cronulla Sharks 16-12 at Toyota Park this evening.Cronulla should have run away with this game and how theThe Brisbane Broncos have come from behind late in the match to defeat the Cronulla Sharks 16-12 at Toyota Park this evening.Cronulla should have run away with this game and how they lost it is beyond me but their completion rate for the entire game was below 50% and if you can?t complete your sets at least half the time, then you are going to struggle to win football games. Stuart Raper will be bitterly disappointed losing their opening game at home to a team flogged by 32 points the previous week.The Broncos did well to hang in when they should have been down by at least 18 points midway through the first half if Luke Covell had shown some brains and passed the ball to an unmarked player on his outside to seal the match and go up by 18 points.The win was vital for the Broncos after last weekends capitulation at the hands of the Cowboys and it was a chance for the Broncos to prove the naysayers wrong (me included) and that they are not a dads army or a spent force in 2006.The Sharks scored a fantastic 100 metre try after the Broncos put up the bomb and David Simmons caught it in his own in goal, set off down filed and tore the Broncos defence to shreds and eventually offloaded to Darren Albert to score the try of the season so far and a try that will no doubt be one of the highlights of the season.Brett Kimmorley was rusty in his first game for the year but Adam Dykes played a fine game for the Sharks while for the Broncos the experienced men led the way superbly with Darren Lockyer, Shane Webcke and Brad Thorn all having strong games for the visiting team.ScorersCronulla Sutherland Sharks: 12Tries: Adam Dykes, Darren AlbertGoals: Luke Covell 2/3Brisbane Broncos: 16Tries: Casey McGuire, Brad Thorn, Shane WebckeGoals: Michael Ennis 2/3Toyota ParkCrowd: 14,221Referee: Russell Smith 1 min: NEWS We are underway at Toyota Park for the Sharks first game of the year.1 min: NEWS We are currently observing a minutes silence to honour the great Steve Rogers who passed away earlier this year.3 min: TRY Cronulla Sutherland SharksBrett Kimmorely drifts across field and picks up Adam Dykes running through a gaping hole in the Broncos defence to score the Sharks first try of the year. Conversion successful. Sharks 6-015 min: NEWS Cronulla looking stronger and more skillful this year with a new looking side. Brisbane are playing well but the Sharks look comfortable so far.21 min: TRY Cronulla Sutherland SharksDavid Simmons catches a Broncos bomb in his own in goal and then runs 90 metres before offloading to Darren Albert to score under the posts untouched. A 100 metre try to shred the Broncos defence and open up a 12 point lead midway through the first half. Outstanding try from the Sharks. Sharks 12-028 min: NEWS Darren Lockyer gets the Broncos a repeate set of six as they begin to mount some pressure on the Sharks defensive line.33 min: NEWS Luke Covell makes a 80 metre break and fails to pass to the man unmarked on his outside to butcher another Sharks try leading into half time. Had the Sharks scored and converted, there was no coming back for the Broncos from an 18 point deficit.39 min: ATTEMPTED PENALTY GOAL Cronulla Sutherland SharksMissed penalty goal from Luke Covell a minute out from half time. Sharks 12-040 min: NEWS The Broncos are down by a dozen at the break and if they don't fix their defensive line in the next 40 minutes, the Sharks will eat them alive.41 min: NEWS We are underway in the second half.45 min: TRY Brisbane BroncosThorn scores off a great break made by Michael Ennis to get the Broncos back into the match. Conversion unsuccessful. Sharks 12-451 min: NEWS video ref to check on a possible try to Broncos winger Darius Boyd but the try is not awarded as Boyd put a foot into touch and failed to ground the ball.65 min: NEWS The game is getting scrappy but the Broncos are on the attack and if they score off this set of six, they are right back in the match. The handling and execution in th second half has been ordinary at best.66 min: TRY Brisbane BroncosShane Webcke crosses for a rare four pointer to close the gap as we enter the final stage of a disappointing game of football. Conversion successful. Sharks 12-1069 min: TRY Brisbane BroncosMcGuire scores off a Lockyer grubber to give the Broncos the lead for the first time in the match. Can the Sharks hit back or will the Broncos score again and put the issue beyond doubt? How the Sharks are behind in this match is beyond me. Broncos 16-1278 min: NEWS Luke Covell kills off any chance of a Sharks comeback by stickig his mits where they did not belong. He has cost them twice this evening and his stature as some sort of eclectic cult heror is seriously under threat after a very poor performance. -----------------------------------------Leagueunlimited.com players of the match:3 - Darren Lockyer (Broncos)2 - Brad Thorn (Broncos)1 - Adam Dykes (Sharks)-----------------------------------------