Full Time
4:05pm Sun March 19, 2023
Round 3 - Belmore Sports Ground, Belmore / Bidjigal - Crowd: 16404

Match Overview

The Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs have recorded a rare victory at Belmore after accounting for the Wests Tigers 26-22 on Sunday afternoon.

Recording only their third victory from 11 appearances at their spiritual home ground in close to a decade, the Bulldogs were given an almighty fright during the closing stages after the Tigers conjured three tries in the space of six minutes to turn a one-sided affair into a nail-biting finish.

Showing their intentions to move the ball around during the opening stages, a left-side shift from the blue and whites saw Hayze Perham (5th minute) benefit from a brilliant display of power and footwork from Viliame Kikau, who offloaded to his fullback in support for first points.

Growing in confidence in front of a hyper partisan crowd of 16,404 supporters, rookie centre Paul Alamoti intercepted a pass ten metres out from his goal line before linking with Josh Addo-Carr (14th minute) to take the side's advantage out to two converted tries.

The Tigers were left to lament a missed opportunity after club debutant John Bateman failed to ground the ball over the line, however the disappointment was short-lived as Brent Naden (22nd minute) snatched an intercept before streaking 80 metres to score underneath the posts.

Replicating the partnership that yielded results earlier in the half, Alamoti and Addo-Carr (28th minute) combined for another long-range effort that saw The Foxx snare his second try of the day.

A penalty goal from Kyle Flanagan on halftime saw the Bulldogs take a 20-6 lead at the change of ends.

Capitalising on a Tigers reshuffle midway through the second half, which saw former Canterbury playmaker Brandon Wakeham come on for his club debut, co-captain Matt Burton (54th minute) burst through the middle of the field to give the home side a 20-point lead.

Conjuring a minor comeback with Wakeham heavily involved in back-to-back tries, Luke Brooks (66th minute) crossed out wide before Fonua Pole (69th minute) scored his first try in the top grade.

Adding a further try to send a chill down the spine of the Belmore faithful, Brooks broke through the Bulldogs defence with a dummy and found Charlie Staines (70th minute) in support to narrow the margin to four points.

The Bulldogs were unable to ice the result despite near misses from Jake Averillo and Corey Waddell, however the Tigers late flurry proved too little too late as the blue and whites held on for a 26-22 victory.

Next week, the Bulldogs will travel across the Tasman on Sunday afternoon to face the Warriors, while the Tigers will face the daunting prospect of taking on the Storm in Melbourne on Friday evening.

3. Reed Mahoney

Producing several key plays during the contest, including a match-winning six again with seconds left on the clock, the Bulldogs hooker proved his worth to his new teammates.

2. Brandon Wakeham

Injected into the game midway through the second half, the former Bulldogs playmaker sparked the visitors into action.

1. Jacob Kiraz

Running for over 250 metres and producing 7 tackle breaks, Kiraz was a standout for the home side.