South Sydney - inspired by Cody Walker - gave the Sydney Roosters their biggest defeat in their storied rivalry, running out 60-8 winners on a wild evening at Stadium Australia tonight.
If there still was Rugby League Week player ratings, Cody Walker would rate 10/10. The five-eighth was involved in nearly one of the ten tries scored and bagged two of his own in a rampage which has guarenteed a home final against the Newcastle Knights next weekend.
The Rabbitohs have shown at times this season when they turn it on, they are electric. Tonight was another level. Roosters scored the opener through Josh Morris then it was a cardinal and myrtle rampage. Souths led 26-4 at the break, it probably should've been higher. Walker orchestrated the onslaught which saw Johnston cross twice to raise his century, Campbell Graham and Walker himself all find the stripe.
Recently re-signed, Alex Johnston stormed to the NRL tryscorer title. Two in the first half got him in range then during the Rabbitohs points avalanche in the second half finished off two simple backline moves and gifted another to move past Kyle Feldt. Tonight was also the second time Johnston had scored five tries in his career.
When the Rabbitohs lost Latrell Mitchell, plenty including this writer had written their obiturary. Tonight Corey Allan gave them some belief with his chiming into the attack in the first half and the makeshift fullback opened the floodgates in the second half as the Rabbitohs gear up for October.
Those at Stadium Australia tonight, will remember a record and the second half was just a festival atmosphere amongst the cardinal and myrtle. Every half break turned into points, the passes looked like the Harlem Globetrotters at points and it ended with the sweetest statistic. South Sydney Rabbitohs with their largest victory against their oldest rival Sydney Roosters just before the finals.
There were a couple of other titles going to the Rabbitohs after this game. Adam Reynolds who kicked 10 goals inched ahead of Kyle Flanagan for the top pointscorer gong alongside Johnston's tryscorer title (pending David Nofoaluma going wild tomorrow).
As the tries poured in, fans furiously waited to type the well known no side has conceded 50 and won a competition stat. The Sydney Roosters, yes the back-to-back Premiers had the red pen put through them by plenty once the scoreboard ticked over to the half century. Coach Trent Robinson has plenty to chew over in the post mortem of this one.
The usually assured Roosters defense was paper thin and gave no resistance against the rampant Rabbitohs. Daniel Tupou scored a consolation try in the second half but that will be scant consolation for the tri-colours who pending the result of the Eels vs Tigers game will head to either Suncorp or Penrith.