Full Time
3:00pm Sat May 21, 2022
Round 11 - Netstrata Jubilee Stadium, Carlton / Bidjigal - Crowd: 7147

Match Overview

 The Saint George Illawarra Dragons have recorded their fifth win of season 2022, coming back from a half-time deficit to defeat the hapless New Zealand Warriors by 6-points.

It was a horror start to the match for the Warriors, with Shaun Johnson dropping the kickoff and allowing the Dragons a chance to score straight away, which they did after Aitken couldn't knock the ball dead off a grubber and Zac Lomax grounded it in goal for the try. 

About 8 minutes later, Francis Molo knocked on and off the back of a set restart, the Warriors hit back. Shaun Johnson's crossfield kick on the last looked as if it would sail over the sideline on the full, but it was saved by a leaping Dallin Watene-Zelezniak, who tapped the ball back to Viliami Vailea, who went over in the corner. 

The Warriors then built some pressure, with back to back repeat sets forced by Shaun Johnson and Freddy Lussick respectively, and the Warriors were finally able to turn all that possession into a lead when Shaun Johnson opted to run the ball on the last and in doing so beat Ben Hunt and dived over to put his team in front. 

It didn't last long for the kiwis though, with Adam Pompey knocking on to give the Dragons excellent field position. The Dragons wasted no time throwing some attack at them, with Cody Ramsey the beneficiary of a right-side overlap, the young fullback opting to take the line on himself and scoring a try as a result. 

On the set after points, Jack de Belin knocked on, and Shaun Johnson again put in a crossfield kick that this time was well placed, and Matt Feagai was unable to reel it in as the ball bounced into the arms of Vailea, who notched up a first half double. 

The Warriors would score another very good try on the other side of the half time break, executing a right hand shift to perfection, going through the hands with a series of crisp passes before Dallin Watene-Zelezniak finished it superbly. 

Despite scoring 4 tries to the Dragons 2, the Warriors were only up by a score of 18-12 due to Reece Walsh going 1/4 with the boot, something which would come back to haunt the Warriors in the end. 

The Dragons began gaining momentum after a reliving penalty was followed by a set restart, and the set ended in debutant Michael Molo crahsing his way over the tryline underneath the black dot. Lomax converted, and the scores were tied at 18 with just over half an hour to go. 

The Dragons did not let up, going the length in their next set thanks largely to a Cody Ramsey break to put them on the attack, before the young fullback got into dummy half and probed down the short side, putting Lomax into a hole and the veteran centre scored his second try of the match. He didn't convert, but the Dragons added a penalty goal with 10 to go to make it a converted try the difference. 

The Warriors were unable to score an equalising try as the Dragons notched up their first win since Round 8, while after a promising start to the year the Warriors have slumped to a 4-7 record.

Next week, the Warriors take on the Knights on Saturday Afternoon in Redcliffe, while the Dragons travel to Belmore on Sunday to face the Bulldogs.

3. Cody Ramsey

2. Ben Hunt

1. Shaun Johnson