A feast of rugby league in New Zealand over the weekend saw two catch up games from Round 18 of the Bartercard Cup with Wellington and Auckland the victors.BARTERCARD CUP COMPETITION ? ROUND 18 RESULTS (Deferred Games)Sunday 27 August 2006: Auckland Lions vs Waicoa Bay Stallions Resthills Park, HamiltonAuckland Lions 46Tries: F. Souter, P. Ale (2), S. Stowers (3), M. Solomona (3)Goals: S. Buckingham (5)Waicoa Bay Stallions 30Tries: J. Auru, M. Moore, S. Fifita, S. Beale, N. Standen (2)Goals: H. Karena (3)Halftime Score: 20 ? 16 To Auckland LionsWellington Orcas vs Northern Storm Whakatikai Park, WellingtonWellington Orcas 48Tries: M. Koliavu, B. Taraeka, D. Misa, J. Moala (2), O. Kua (2), P, Patelesio (2), Goals: L. Boyd (6)Northern Storm 14Tries: B. Hikaka, D. Were, A. DonaldsonGoals: D. WereHalftime Score: 26 ? 0 To Wellington OrcasWeek 1 of the competition play-offs kicked into gear withn the Bulls hosting the Rangers in Christchiurch. A tough ask to beat the Canterbury side in Christchurch, as the Rangers discovered.In the other game of the first week of the finals the Tamaki Leopards will battle it out with the Jetz at Mount Smart Stadium tonight at 8pm.BARTERCARD CUP COMPETITION ? WEEK 1 OF PLAY-OFFS RESULTSSaturday 26 August 2006:Canterbury Bulls vs Waitakere Rangers (2nd vs 3rd) Rugby League Park, ChristchurchCanterbury Bulls 26Tries: L. Sione, L. Fidow, D. Wineti, D. Metcalf (2)Goals: S. Hurrell (2)Waitakere Rangers 20Tries: R. Godfrey, G. Bailey, H. Barclay, S. JonesGoals: D. Shepherd (2)Halftime Score: 10 ? 6 To Waitakere Rangers PROVISIONAL MATCH ? RESULT:Auckland Ladies vs Canterbury Ladies Mt Smart Stadium, Auckland (C/R To Warriors vs Roosters)Auckland 50Tries: C. Marsters, S. Rowe-Wolland, M. Miki, L. Tawhai, L. Mariu (2), T. Morris (4)Goals: L. Mariu (5)Canterbury 4Tries: A. ThompsonHalftime Score: 26 ? 0 To Auckland
HUDDERSFIELD Giants captain Chris Thorman insists his side will take the positives from their Powergen Challenge Cup defeat and use them in the fight to avoid relegation.
SEAN Long savoured his greatest Powergen Challenge Cup success after being awarded the Lance Todd trophy for a record third time
BRIAN McClennan, coach of defending Tri-Nations champions New Zealand, is predicting the closest tournament yet.The Kiwis are jointly hosting this year?s series, which gets under way on October 14 in Auckland."It has become the norm for people to say that Australia are going to win it but Great Britain have been making good strides and we?ve made some steady progress, so I think there?s a real excitement about what could happen this tournament," said McClennan."I really believe this series is going to be the best we?ve had so far. There?s some continuity in what?s been happening - there?s a bit of knowledge on each squad and what they do."Britain were represented at the launch by Sydney Roosters? former Leeds forward Adrian Morley, who is currently serving a seven-match ban."Brian Noble has a very clear plan on what he expects from us and the lads I?ve spoken to have said there?s a really determined feel amongst the squad," said Morley.Australia, who suffered a shock 24-0 defeat in last November?s final at Elland Road, are favourites to regain the title they held in 2004 but new coach Ricky Stuart is expecting a difficult opening Test in Auckland."The Kiwis are always a lot stronger when playing at home," he said. "Test-match footy in New Zealand generally means it?s cold, windy and wet."We?re going around on their home turf, we?re playing the Tri-Nations champions and I think we?ll have a different attitude."From our first match in Auckland we need to start on the right note."Group matches will also be staged in Melbourne, Christchurch, Sydney, Wellington and Brisbane, with the final taking place in Sydney on November 25."This is the fourth Tri-Nations tournament with a great tradition building around the concept and I truly believe the best series is yet to come," said International Federation chairman Colin Love."Early ticket sales in Australia have been really encouraging, Melbourne in particular."Source: superleague.co.uk
MATCH reports for Week 1 of the Queensland Wizard Cup finals including full list of upcoming finals matches.
SEMI-FINAL results for Queensland FOGS Cup and FOGS Colts Challenge:FOGS CUPELIMINATION SEMI FINAL ? A GRADESunday 27th August at BMD Kougari Oval.SOUTHS LOGAN 28 (John Andrews, Matt Templeman, Mehau Phillip, Ron Troutman, Adrian Maloney tries; Justin Hoggart 4 goals) d WYNNUM MANLY 24 (Chris Currie 2, Daniel Sorbello 2, Dan Powers tries, Jimmy O?Brien 2 goals)QUALIFYING SEMI FINAL ? A GRADESaturday 26th August at the Piggabeen Complex.BURLEIGH 36 (Ryan Perry 2, Marty Paulson, Mark Commens, Chris Hodges, Tim Tripp tries; Phil Ramage 6 goals) d EASTS12 (Chris Parker, David Wood tries; Luke Archer 2 goals)FOGS COLTS CHALLENGEELIMINATION SEMI FINAL ? COLTS Sunday 27th August at BMD Kougari Oval.WYNNUM MANLY 62 (Ben Cronin 2, Shaun Cotter 2, Brendon O?Neill, Luke Menhinnitt, Ryan Brown, Warren Jensen, Adam Mansy, Josef McLean, Michael Chaplain tries; Luke Menihinnitt 9 goals) d ASPLEY 8 (Vaughan Eriksen, Jacob Fauid tries)QUALIFYING SEMI FINAL ? COLTSSaturday 26th August at the Piggabeen Complex.REDCLIFFE 46 (Phil Daisy 2, Matt Gillett 2, Asher Elemani, Logan Sullivan, Sam Schull, Tim Benson tries; Phil Daisy 7 goals) d EASTS 16 (Matthew Klein, Joe Richards, Blair Conlon, Dywayne Rigby)NEXT WEEKS GAMES ? SEMI FINALS 2SATURDAY, 2 SEPTEMBER 2006FOGS COLTS CHALLENGE1.15pm - Easts v Wynnum Manly Langlands Park (Minor Semi)FOGS CUP3.00pm - Easts v Souths Logan Langlands Park (Minor Semi)SUNDAY, 3 SEPTEMBER 2006FOGS COLTS CHALLENGE1.15pm - Norths v Redcliffe Piggabeen Complex (Major Semi)FOGS CUP3.00pm - Tweed Heads v Burleigh Piggabeen Complex (Major Semi)
SEMI-FINAL results for the QLD Wizard Cup:
ROUND 25 Parramatta Eels 0 v Brisbane Broncos 23at Parramatta StadiumReferee: Tony ArcherMatch Summary:The Brisbane Broncos have scored an impressive 23-0 victory over a depleted Parramataa Eels side at Parramatta Stadium this afternoon.The Broncos, for the second week in succession, have kept a team scoreless and that would give the Broncos great confidence two weeks out from the finals, not to emention the boost their for and against will receive.The scoreline didn't tell the true tale of the match, with the Eels losing half Jeremy Smith late in the first half with a suspected broken hand and with the Eels struggling for props, their go forward suffered agains the much larger Brisbane pack.The Eels struggled to make it out of their own half and with the lack of go forward, Brisbane easily dominated field position and possession in both halves but the Eels fought all the way, knowing full well for and against could prove vital in the finals washup.The Broncos have almost certainly booked a place in the top four and secured a home final while the Eels will now fall into elimination matches as they will more than likley finish seventh and face the Bulldogs in the first round of the finals.Scorers:Parramatta Eels: 0Tries: Brisbane Broncos: 23Tries: Justin Hodges, Stephen Michaels, Corey Parker, Brad ThornGoals: Darren Lockyer 2/4, Corey Parker 1/1Field Goals: Darren LockyerBy the Clock: 1 min: NEWS We are underway at a sold out Parramatta Stadium. It's a sea of blue and gold!5 min: TRY Brisbane BroncosDarren Lockyer sets up a great try for Justin Hodges, who scores next to the posts. Brisbane have had all the ball and field possession in the opening ten minutes. Conversion successful. Broncos 6-010 min: NEWS Brisbane really dominating in the opening stages but the Eels are starting to find their feet.13 min: NEWS Broncos throw a forward pass and a try to Karmichael Hunt is disallowed on the advice of the touch judge.19 min: ATTEMPTED PENALTY GOAL Brisbane BroncosLockyer misses an easy conversion so there is no change to the score. Brisbane are still dominating field position. Broncos 6-026 min: NEWS Brisbane starting to tire and with all the possession, they should be a lot further in front at this stage of the match. Tonie Carroll has just knocked on.34 min: NEWS Luke Burt has run into the goalposts chasing a grubber. He's not hurt though.35 min: TRY Brisbane BroncosThe Broncos score just before half time and the scoreline now reflects their dominance of possession in the first half. Conversion successful. Broncos 12-037 min: FIELD GOAL Brisbane BroncosDarren Lockyer pots a 31 metre field goal to extend the Broncos lead beyond two converted tries. Broncos 13-041 min: NEWS We are underway in the second half and Jeremey Smith from the Eels is out of the match with a suspected broken hand.45 min: NEWS The Eels are on the ropes but the game is really starting to open up. Exciting stuff.52 min: NEWS Parramatta starting to find their feet and Brisbane are starting to tire and leave a lot of open space for the Eels.61 min: NEWS Parramatta can't get across the line and time is fast running out.65 min: NEWS The Eels are no closer to scoring and with fifteen to go, it would be a huge effort for the Eels to get home from here.68 min: TRY Brisbane BroncosThe Broncos wrap it up after Brad Thorn scores the match winner. The Eels were out on their feet. Conversion Broncos 19-076 min: TRY Brisbane BroncosBrisbane have put the icing on the cake with a try to Steve Michaels in the corner to keep their oppostion scoreless for the second week in succession. Conversion unsuccessful. Broncos 23-0-----------------------------------------Leagueunlimited.com players of the match:3 - Darren Lockyer2 - Nathan Hindmarsh1 - Justin Hodges-----------------------------------------
ROUND 25 South Sydney Rabbitohs 12 v North Queensland Cowboys 34at Telstra StadiumReferee: Tony De Las HerasMatch Summary:The North Queensland Cowboys have comprehensively defeated the South Sydney Rabbitohs today 34-12 at Telstra Stadium this afternoon.The Cowboys started the match strongly with tries to Matty Bowen in the 5th minute and David Fauiumu in the 10th minute to give the visitors a 10-0 lead. The Cowboys extended that lead in the 20th when Aaron Payne intercepted and nearly went the length of the field and from the next tackle Luke O'Donnell scored next to the posts for a 16-0 lead.The Rabbitohs got on the board in the 29th minute when Nathan Merritt scored next to the post after a nice pass from Trent Young. The Rabbitohs had a few opportunities late in the half to score but poor ball control would cost them and they trailed 16-6 at the break.The Rabbitohs would continue to blow chances to get back into the match early in the second half with more poor ball control. The Cowboys picked up a penalty goal in the 54th minute to give them an 18-6 lead. The Cowboys would put the match out of reach with tries in the 56th, 67th & 71st minutes to give the visitors an unassailable 34-6 lead. The Rabbitohs would pick up a consolation try to Paul Mellor to round out a 34-12 fulltime score. Scorers:South Sydney Rabbitohs: 12Tries: Nathan Merritt, Paul MellorGoals: Joe Williams 2/2North Queensland Cowboys: 34Tries: Matthew Bowen, David Fauiumu, Luke O'Donnell, Aaron Payne, Justin Smith(2)Goals: Ashley Graham 5/7By the Clock:Welcome to Telstra Stadium in Sydney for todays clash between the Rabbitohs and Cowboys. 1 min: Rabbitoh's kick off to get the game underway3 min: TRY North Queensland CowboysMatty Bowen scoots out of dummy half to score his first try since round 6. Conversion successful Cowboys 6-010 min: TRY North Queensland CowboysAnother soft try here as Fauiumu goes trough the defence to score. Rabbitoh's need to tighten up in this aspect. Conversion unsuccessful. Cowboys 10-020 min: TRY North Queensland CowboysAaron Payne picks up the intercept and nearly runs the length of the field, from the next tackle the Cowboys spread the ball and Luke O'Donnell scores near the post. Conversion successful Cowboys 16-029 min: TRY South Sydney RabbitohsTrent Young slips a good ball to Nathan Merritt who scores next to the post. Conversion successful Cowboys 16-640 min: VIDEO REF - possible Souths Try - It goes to Refs call and he calls held up. NO TRY Halftime... The Rabbitohs are trying hard to get back into the match after a slow start and have had a few opportunities in the last 10 minutes of the half.Stay tuned to see if they can come back or can the Cowboys hang on.41 min: Cowboys kickoff to get the second half underway49 min: NEWS The Rabbitohs making lots of opportunities but are unable to capitalise. The completion rate from both teams in the second half is very poor.54 min: PENALTY GOAL North Queensland CowboysThe Rabbitohs are penalised for a high tackle right in front of the posts. Ashley Graham slots the conversion Cowboys 18-658 min: TRY North Queensland CowboysThe Cowboys keep the ball alive and backup well for Justin Smith to score under the post. Conversion successful. Cowboys 24-666 min: INJURY - Germaine Paulson leaves the field with an eye injury. From the next tackle Joe Galuvao leaves the field also, with a knee injury.67 min: TRY North Queensland CowboysJustin Smith picks up a double as he goes through some poor defence. Conversion unsuccessful. Cowboys 28-671 min: TRY North Queensland CowboysGavin Cooper takes a bomb on his own 25 metre line goes through some poor defence before linking up with Aaron Payne on the halfway and he races away to score the try. Conversion successful Cowboys 34-674 min: VIDEO REF - Possible Rabbitohs try. NO TRY held up again for the Rabbitohs76 min: TRY South Sydney RabbitohsPaul Mellor takes the cross field kick and busts through the defence to score out wide. Conversion successful from the sideline. Cowboys 34-12Fulltime..-----------------------------------------Leagueunlimited.com players of the match:3 - Aaron Payne2 - Carl Webb1 - Justin Smith-----------------------------------------
ROUND 25 New Zealand Warriors 42 v Sydney Roosters 16at Mt Smart (Ericsson) StadiumReferee: Russell SmithMatch Summary:The New Zealand Warriors have crushed the spirits of Sydney Roosters today at Mt Smart Stadium, running out 42-16 winners in a very one-sided contest.The final scoreline of 42-16 somewhat flattered the Roosters as the Warriors went on a rampage, including 4 tries to Jerome Ropati, to record a memorable victory in front of a strong home crowd of 12,711.The game began at a fast pace with Brent Webb committing a blatant double movement in the 4th minute before Ruben Wiki scored five minutes later off a neat short ball by Grant Rovelli.The home team backed it up soon after with Ropati?s first try of the day when club stalwart Awen Guttenbeil put him in a gap close to the line. In the 19th minute the Roosters gave their fans some hope after a failed Warriors raid resulted in a 70m burst from fullback Shaun Foley. From the ensuing play Amos Roberts scored and shortly after a similar occurrence took place as Roosters forward Anthony Tupou raced a fair distance to setup a terrific try for Iosia Soliola. The conversion brought the scores back to 12-10 but that was as close as the Roosters got for the rest of the game.Tries to Patrick Ah Van in the 29th minute and Ropati?s second in the 38th took the halftime lead to 20-10 and the writing was on the wall. Several missed opportunities in between, including another to Webb which looked legitimate, cruelled the Warriors chances of racking up a bigger lead but to their credit they continued to pummel the Roosters defence whereas they may have lost their way in season?s gone by.Epalahame Luauki brushed aside several defenders in the 44th minute to maintain the rage before Ropati completed his hat-trick ten minutes later with some good lead-up work around the rucks from Nathan Fien and Lance Hohaia.Playing in his 265th first grade game, breaking Stephen Kearney?s record for most in the NRL by a New Zealand born player, vice-captain Ruben Wiki found himself in the sin bin for the first time in his career after holding down Amos Roberts after the Roosters flyer made a break.Minutes later the visitors took advantage of the overlap and put Sam Perrett over for their final score of the day.The Warriors continued the carnage in the 71st minute as Ropati capped a memorable day when he sealed his fourth try and Ah Van gratefully accepted a pin-point cut-out pass by Webb in the 78th to cross for his second.This was a dominant effort by the Warriors over a meek Roosters outfit who have failed to live up to even the most humble predictions for 2006. New Zealand travel to Brisbane next week for their final game of the year in what should be a cracking contest against the semi-finals bound Broncos. Meanwhile, it doesn?t get any easier for the Roosters, they face the Dragons at the SCG.Scorers:New Zealand Warriors: 42Tries: Epalahame Luauki, Jerome Ropati(4), Ruben Wiki, Patrick Ah Van(2)Goals: Lance Hohaia 5/8Sydney Roosters: 16Tries: Sam Perrett, Amos Roberts, Iosia SoliolaGoals: Craig Fitzgibbon 2/3By the Clock:Nice day over here in Auckland where the Roosters take on the Warriors. The game is a dead rubber but a good contest is expected nonetheless.Changes: Lopini Paea out for the Roosters with Charlie Tonga coming onto the bench. For the Warriors, Cooper Vuna makes way for the early return of Nathan Fien.1 min: NEWS The Roosters get us underway in the first half.4 min: NEWS Video referee denies Brent Webb a try after the Warriors fullback committed a textbook double-movement. Silly play by Webb as the Warriors are dominating proceedings here.8 min: NEWS Warriors go close again and they're looking good early but failing to convert. Roosters are very flat and without many options at this point.9 min: TRY New Zealand WarriorsThe Warriors are in courtesy of Ruben Wiki. He hit a gap off a pass by Rovelli and crashed over to score. Warriors are dominating. Hohaia converts and they take the early lead. Warriors 6-014 min: TRY New Zealand WarriorsWarriors are in again. From broken play Guttenbeil puts Ropati into a gap and he motors 35m to score under the posts. Hohaia converts. Signs are ominous here for the Roosters. Warriors 12-017 min: NEWS Another near miss by the Warriors and then Foley turns it around and runs 70m upfield. Very open affair here at Mt Smart.19 min: TRY Sydney RoostersRoosters get on the board thanks to Foley's break. They spread it wide and Cross finds Roberts on the wing who scores. Fitzgibbon can't convert from out wide. Warriors 12-424 min: TRY Sydney RoostersAnthony Tupou makes a break out of nowhere and finds Soliola who scores next to the posts. Fitzgibbon converts. Warriors 12-1029 min: TRY New Zealand WarriorsAh Van picks up a loose ball and races 60m to score. This game is turning into a try-fest. Hohaia can't convert and the lead remains 6 points. Warriors 16-1032 min: NEWS Webb denied another try after an obstruction is ruled. Looked ok to me.36 min: NEWS Another missed opportunity from the Warriors as Ropati grasses a Webb grubber in the in-goal area.38 min: TRY New Zealand WarriorsRopati scores his second as he forces his way over close to the line. A bit soft really. Hohaia misses and the margin is now 10 points to the Warriors. Warriors 20-1040 min: NEWS A scorching first 40 minutes of action as the scoreline probably flatters the Roosters a little. New Zealand has missed several opportunites and they should be leading by more than they are. Roosters are looking disjointed and unenthusiastic. The game is still wide open though, but I fancy the Warriors to keep it going.41 min: NEWS The Warriors restart proceedings here at Mt Smart.44 min: TRY New Zealand WarriorsThe Warriors push further ahead this time through Epalahame Luauki. He makes a mockery of the Roosters defence close to the line and steams across the stripe to score. Hohaia converts and the lead is out to 16. Warriors 26-1052 min: NEWS The Warriors have repelled a few attacking raids by the Roosters and are looking to go back on the attack themselves.54 min: TRY New Zealand WarriorsThe Warriors are in again. Fien gets out of dummy half and dishes to Hohaia who grubbers ahead. Ah Van scopps it to Ropati and the lively no.6 claims his third for the day. Hohaia converts and the Warriors are running away with it here. Warriors 32-1055 min: NEWS Crowd: 12,711. Not a bad effort.64 min: NEWS Warriors setting up for another raid here. The last few minutes have been littered with errors from both sides.65 min: NEWS Wiki finds himself in the sin bin after he held down Roberts following an intercept.67 min: TRY Sydney RoostersThe Roosters claw one back with a try to Sam Perrett on the flank. Fitzy converts and they've got a bit more credibility. Warriors 32-1671 min: TRY New Zealand WarriorsAn amazed Roptai crosses for his fourth of the day with after regathering a kick ahead. Hohaia adds the extras and the Warriors want more. Warriors 38-1678 min: TRY New Zealand WarriorsAh Van gets a double as Webb throws a pass with pin-point accuracy from first receiver to his wing-man. Hohaia hits the post with the conversion. Warriors 42-1680 min: NEWS Game over - Warriors destroy Roosters.-----------------------------------------Leagueunlimited.com players of the match:3 - Jerome Ropati2 - Brent Webb1 - Lance Hohaia-----------------------------------------
ST Helens 42 (Wilkin 2, Cayless, Talau, Long, Fa'asavalu, Lyon tries; Lyon 7 goals) def. Huddersfield Giants 12 (Paul, Aspinwall tries; De Vere 2 goals). Att: 65,137.St Helens won the Powergen Challenge Cup for a tenth time with a one sided seven-try victory over the Huddersfield Giants at Twickenham.The Giants took the shock lead early on when Martin Aspinwall went over. The Saints finally got on the scoreboard on twenty minutes through Willie Talau and then took the lead just before the break when Sean Long went over. Jamie Lyon converted for a 12-6 lead.The second half became one-way traffic as St Helens moved through the gears; they ran in five converted tries with Jon Wilkin bagging a brace. Huddersfield did mange a consolation from Robbie Paul.Sean Long was named Lance Todd Trophy winner for a record third time, Jamie Lyon?s perfect kicking gave him a haul of eighteen points as the Saints collected their fifth Challenge Cup trophy in the Super League era.Huddersfield: Reilly, Aspinwall, Nero, De Vere, Donlan, Thorman, Paul, Jackson, Drew, Gannon, Crabtree, Raleigh, Wild.Replacements: Snitch, Jones, Smith, McDonald.St Helens: Wellens, Gardner, Lyon, Talau, Meli, Pryce, Long, P. Anderson, Cunningham, Cayless, Wilkin, Sculthorpe, Hooper.Replacements: Gilmour, Roby, Graham, Fa'asavalu.Referee: R Silverwood (Dewsbury).
LION Red Fox Memorial
Another heroic effort from Otahuhu hooker Arron Pawley has ended the finals hopes of Marist in the Fox Memorial Championship. The Saints struggled through the first half to trail 18 nil at the break before being beaten on home soil 26-18. After coming home strongly at the back end of the competition, the Saints will surely be disappointed at their first week exit.
Pawley backed up last week
AUCKLAND RUGBY LEAGUE PRELIMINARY
ROUND 25 St George Illawarra Dragons 18 v Cronulla Sutherland Sharks 4at WIN StadiumReferee: Paul SimpkinsMatch Summary:The St George Illawarra Dragons have defeated a determined Cronulla Sharks 18-4 at a rain soaked WIN Stadium tonight. The win however may have been costly with Dragons utility Dean Young being stretchered off just before full time with a suspected broken leg.In a highly physical encounter, referee Paul Simpkins issued 13 penalties and gave numerous warnings before sin binning three players just before half time. With the second fight of the match spilling over the touchline, the referee sent Sharks forward Paul Gallen and centre Ben Pomeroy to the bin. They were joined by Dragons lock Shaun Timmins who was playing his first match since being injured in round 12.The Dragons opened the scoring after 10 minutes when winger Wes Naiqama slotted a penalty goal. The first try came in the 17th minute following a break from centre Mark Gasnier. A kick through from five eighth Trent Barrett was juggled by Brett 'Slippery' Morris before the rookie winger was able to regather and score out wide.Handling errors thwarted the Sharks advance, but the visitors scored in the 34th minute when Gallen took advantage of an unmarked blind side and dived over from dummy half.At half time, the Dragons held a narrow 6-4 lead.The second half saw Saints take control with a try to centre Matt Cooper soon after the break. The sideline conversion from Aaron Gorrell made it 12-4.The match was marked by some big forward clashes before the halves Trent Barrett, Ben Hornby combined with Gasnier, the movement setting up Young to score next to the posts in the 69th minute.The result sees the Dragons assured of a top eight spot, regardless of the Knights v Panthers outcome. The Sharks, however, have suffered their ninth consecutive loss, equalling their worst losing streak in the Club's history.Scorers:St George Illawarra Dragons: 18Tries: Matt Cooper, Dean Young, Brett MorrisGoals: Aaron Gorrell 1/1, Wes Naiqama 2/3Cronulla Sutherland Sharks: 4Tries: Paul GallenGoals: Luke Covell 0/1Penalties: Dragons 7-6Crowd: 16,897By the Clock:Raining in Wollongong but a good crowd on hand. A couple of line up changes, in particular Saints have lock forward Shaun Timmins making his return from injury.Kick off...!7 min: NEWS Still pouring rain and still 0-0.10 min: PENALTY GOAL St George Illawarra DragonsWes Naiqama kicks a penalty goal from right in front. Sharks repeated infringements while on the back foot. Dragons 2-011 min: FIGHT - a bit of feeling early on. Penalty goes against Dragons.15 min: NEWS Sharks get their second penalty following a high tackle against Luke Bailey, but they are unable to find touch. Penalties favour Saints 3-2.17 min: TRY St George Illawarra DragonsWinger Brett Morris scores an extraordinary try after trying to regather a slippery ball while sliding into the in-goal. After the ball appears to be out of reach, it amazingly falls into Morris's grasp for the try. Follows bust up the middle of the park from Mark Gasnier and kick ahead from Trent Barrett. Naiqama unable to convert from out wide. Dragons 6-024 min: NEWS Not for the first time Sharks get an opportunity from close range after Saints make an error. But the Sharks then make an error of their own and are unable to complete the set.30 min: NEWS Still 6-0 to the Dragons. Plenty of handling errors in the slippery conditions with the Sharks being the main offenders.34 min: TRY Cronulla Sutherland SharksPaul Gallen from dummy half scores the easiest of tries when there's no winger at home and Saints nod off on the blind side. Covell unable to convert from out wide. Dragons 6-439 min: FIGHT and SIN BINNINGS - a bigger dust up this time spills over the sideline. SIN BIN - Paul Gallen (Sharks), Ben Pomeroy (Sharks) and Shaun Timmins (Dragons)40 min: NEWS Saints winger Brett Morris limps off after sliding into the advertising signs. Looks OK.Half time: Dragons 6-4Saints have a better completion rate and probably should be further ahead. Sharks have had a little more of the possession but considering the amount of dropped ball, should be quite pleased they are only two points down.A physical encounter which will see 12 verses 11 for the first eight or nine minutes of the second half.Second half underway...NEWS - Rain has eased.43 min: TRY St George Illawarra DragonsMatt Cooper scores out wide after Saints get a roll on early in the second half. Cooper figured in an early half bust. Aaron Gorrell conversion hits the posts and is successful! Dragons 12-446 min: NO TRY - Dragons denied after Dean Young kicks through for Gasnier but the Sharks cover it and bat the ball dead. Gasnier cops a knock but is OK.47 min: Possible TRY to Dragons. Video ref checking....VERDICT: NO TRY. Gasnier unable to ground the ball over the line. 20m restart for the Sharks.49 min: NEWS Sinners from both sides return and we have 13 verses 13 again.50 min: NEWS Sharks defend well for a set on their own line and work it downfield after a 20m restart.59 min: NEWS Sharks get a penalty after referee rules that Brett Kimmorley is hit late after kicking. Sharks now getting repeat sets at the Dragons' line.60 min: UPDATE - Saints pressure in defence and Sharks make a handling error.62 min: NEWS Sharks get a penalty after Ben Creagh (Dragons) is guilty of a high tackle. But Sharks hand over possession with a forward pass. Then Saints make a handling error as another fight threatens to blow up.69 min: TRY St George Illawarra DragonsDean Young scores next to the posts after Gasnier steps infield during some broken play from 10m out, finds Ben Hornby who passes to Young. Naiqama converts. Dragons 18-473 min: NEWS Dean Young has suffered a leg injury after twisting awkwardly in a tackle and is stretchered off.79 min: NEWS Dragons forced into a line drop out and Sharks should get the last set.80 min: NEWS ON DEAN YOUNG - Suspected broken leg.Full time: Dragons win 18-4.A fiery encounter with Saints managing to outmuscle the Sharks in the end. The visitors never stopped trying but too many errors brought them undone, the Sharks crashing to their ninth successive loss.Saints have now won two on the trot and are assured a finals berth. All the Dragons forwards lifted with front rowers Luke Bailey and Jason Ryles doing a huge amount of work. The Dragons backs showed plenty of enterprise in attack considering the conditions with Gasnier being the difference at crucial turning points. A fine send off for Trent Barrett, Shaun Timmins and Luke Bailey who may have played their last home game in the Red V should the Dragons miss out on a home semi-final.-----------------------------------------Leagueunlimited.com players of the match:3 - Luke Bailey (Dragons)2 - Jason Ryles (Dragons)1 - Mark Gasnier (Dragons)-----------------------------------------
ROUND 25 Newcastle Knights 40 v Penrith Panthers 4at EnergyAustralia StadiumReferee: Steven ClarkMatch Summary:Newcastle has blown away any chance Penrith had of securing a semi-finals berth after running out 40-4 winners at EnergyAustralia Stadium tonight.After starting the game well with a try to powerful winger Michael Gordon in the 5th minute, Penrith failed to register another single point as the Newcastle forwards dominated and the backs ran amok.Leading 22-4 at halftime through two early tries to Matt Gidley followed by further scores to David Seage (35th minute) and Luke Davico right on half time, Newcastle were well in command at the break.No doubt comments of Penrith?s stunning revival against the Sharks reverberated around the Knight?s changing rooms whilst cutting up the oranges, but it clearly didn?t worry the home side.Quinn scored in the 52nd minute to take a 26-4 lead before Mullen, Perry and Carmont all added tries to the tally with a range of kickers making the fulltime score 40-4.This victory is a good sign for the Knight who have won two without captain Andrew Johns and now face a bit of a dilemma in who will partner him in the halves after Kurt Gidley and Jarrod Mullen both played strongly. They enjoy a week off with the bye in Round 26 and seem certain to have booked a home semi-final.The Panthers season comes to a close even after they were given an opportunity by Canberra?s loss to sneak back into the top 8. They play host to the Bulldogs next week and will find the going a bit tough even at home.Scorers:Newcastle Knights: 40Tries: George Carmont, Matthew Gidley(2), Josh Perry, Anthony Quinn, David Seage, Jarrod Mullen, Luke DavicoGoals: Daniel Abraham 2/4, Kurt Gidley 1/3, Reegan Tanner 1/1Penrith Panthers: 4Tries: Michael GordonBy the Clock:Vital match here at EnergyAustralia Stadium where the Panthers will be looking to cause an upset to keep their faint semi final hopes alve. Meanwhile, Newcastle are trying to put two wins together without Andrew Johns and try to earn themselves a home final.Changes: Craig Gower is out for Penrith with a knee injury, his replacement is Craig Trindall. Newcastle are as per the program.1 min: NEWS And we're underway in the first half.5 min: TRY Penrith PanthersPenrith open the scoring through powerful winger Michael Gordon down the flanks. He's having a good season. Campbell fails to convert but the Panthers are on the board. Panthers 4-013 min: NEWS Penrith getting on top early through their forwards who are making more yards than the Knights. The Panthers have also broken the line a couple of times.14 min: TRY Newcastle KnightsThe Knights hit back with a try to Matt Gidley out wide. Conversion unsuccessful. 4 all.21 min: NEWS Both sides getting into the contest here with some heavy contact up front.28 min: TRY Newcastle KnightsGidley bags his second for the night as the Knights move ahead for the first time in the game. Tanner converts. Knights 10-435 min: TRY Newcastle KnightsNewcastle putting Penrith to the sword here with another try this time to rookie David Seage. Abraham adds the extras. Knights 16-438 min: NEWS The home side dominating here with superior forward runs and good field position off the back of it.39 min: TRY Newcastle KnightsNewcastle steam ahead with another try to forward Luke Davico. Abraham converts and they look pretty good right now. Knights 22-440 min: NEWS Newcastle holding a solid 18-point lead at the break but there's no guarantees here after Penrith's Houdini effort last week. Should be an entertaining second half as the Panthers look to stay in contention for the finals.41 min: NEWS And we're underway in the second half.46 min: NEWS Both teams working themselves into the second half here.51 min: NEWS Still no change to the score, a few errors creeping into the game here.52 min: TRY Newcastle KnightsThe home team push further ahead with a try to nuggetty winger Anthony Quinn. Conversion unsuccessful. Knights 26-460 min: NEWS Still chugging along up here at Marathon Stadium. Both teams fighting hard but the Knights are looking good at this stage.63 min: TRY Newcastle KnightsReplacement half Jarrod Mullen streaks away to post another try as the Knights snuff out any hope Penrith had of creating another miracle comeback. Conversion unsuccessful Knights 30-470 min: NEWS No change to the score, Newcastle just grinding away up here.75 min: TRY Newcastle KnightsThe tries keep coming with Josh Perry barging over the line to enhance Newcastle's differential. Kurt Gidley converts. Knights 36-479 min: TRY Newcastle KnightsNewcastle seal victory with a try to fleet-footed centre George Carmont. It's ended up a bit of a shellacking up here. Conversion unsuccessful. Knights 40-4-----------------------------------------Leagueunlimited.com players of the match:3 - Jarrod Mullen2 - Matthew Gidley1 - Luke Davico-----------------------------------------