Jack Harbidge reviews the final game of the NRL regular season between the Wests Tigers and Canterbury Bulldogs at the Moreton Daily Stadium. Here’s how the game went.
Tries: Nick Meaney (9, 31), Jake Averillo (11, 70), Jack Hetherington (41), Jayden Okunbor (58), Corey Allan (66)
Goals: Nick Meaney (13, 42, 67), Will Hopoate (71)
Player of the Year PointsEmbed from Getty Images
3 pts – Nick Meaney (Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs)
2 pts – Josh Jackson (Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs)
1 pt – Jack Hetherington (Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs)
MATCH REPORTEmbed from Getty Images
With nothing but pride on the line for both sides in this final round encounter, the first half became a battle of wills between the two clubs struggling for form on the field. It was, in fact, the Bulldogs who turned up with the winning attitude of the two sides and the Canterbury intensity paid off early on in the first half with Nick Meaney crossing off a good shape down the right edge, having absorbed all sorts of pressure early on.
The Dogs soon backed up the try off the back of Zac Cini incapable of fielding a high ball 10 metres from his line, with Jake Averillo crossing after cleaning up the ricochet just two minutes after Meaney’s opener. The pressure from the Bulldogs didn’t stop and after a disallowed try 15 minutes in, they got on the board again through a Nick Meaney penalty goal. Meaney’s dominance didn’t stop for the half, however, and he went over down the right edge just eight minutes from the half time hooter to put his side 16 points up heading into the break.
HALF-TIME: Wests Tigers 0 Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs 16Embed from Getty Images
The second half only provided more joy for the Bulldogs and greater woes for the hapless Wests side. Scoring opened just over a minute in off the back of the first set of the game, with Cini and David Nofoaluma getting in each other’s way and fumbling a bomb for Jack Hetherington to score off the back of after Aaron Schoupp cleaned up the ball from the error.
Wests managed to stem the flow of tries for the next quarter of the half, before Jayden Okunbor grabbed a meat pie of his own to extend the Bulldogs lead to 26 points. With the pressure and effort from Canterbury clearly taking its toll on a somewhat lifeless Tigers side, multiple infringements saw Luciano Leilua sent to the bin with 15 minutes left to play. The Bulldogs made use of the man advantage and scored through Corey Allan and the punishment didn’t stop there for the Tigers, with Shaun Blore soon following Leilua to the touchline for an infringement in the set following the try.
As a result, the Bulldogs crossed with ease through Jake Averillo to extend the score to 38-0 after Will Hopoate took the kicking duties from Meaney.
FULL-TIME: Wests Tigers 0 Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs 38
to be advised
Match Review Committee
to be advised