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Canterbury Bankstown too strong for Newtown

June 24 2012

by Jodie Newell

It was a tough Round 17 encounter of the VB NSW Cup match played at Lidcombe Oval on Saturday as the Canterbury Bankstown Bulldogs outmuscled the Newtown Jets 42-20.

The traditional western suburbs rivals made sure the game wasn't going to be won without a fight, putting on an entertaining, physical game.

In perfect sunny conditions, both sides began the match with a dose of ball handling jitters and it took some time for both teams to settle. It was the Dogs who were the first to post points on the board after an excellent steal by half-back Trent Cutler who gained valuable territory. Winger Ratu Tagive made perfect use of the field position and scored a try. Trent Hodkinson added the extras with a superb kick. Dogs 6-0.

There was a bit of feeling between the two sides and it came to head with a large melee. There was some heated pushing and shoving which saw Canterbury’s Joel Romelo and Jets Dylan Napa sent off the ground for ten minutes.

After the dust had settled, play continued without similar distraction. The Dogs kept their focus and scored a very easy try thanks to Trent Cutler. With the successful conversion Canterbury Bankstown increased their lead by twelve points.

Cutler was beginning to dominate the play with some slick passing. Daniel Abou-Sleiman gladly accepted the work of his team-mate and was over the line. The conversion by Trent Hodkinson was good and the game was moving very quickly away from Newtown 0-18.

Thanks to the hard working Adam Henry, Newtown scored a badly needed try. The score couldn't have come soon enough, as Canterbury Bankstown had dominated most of the half and the Jets needed to get back into the game.

Henry's work for Newtown seemed to lift his team-mates and it wasn't long before another Jets try was being applauded by the Newtown faithful seated in the Lidcombe Oval bleachers. Full back Alofa Alofa scored the try with Blake Lazarus converting and amazingly Newtown were very much back into the game at 18-10.

The Dogs seemed to be unfazed by Newtown's resurgence and quickly restored their lead with Daniel Abou-Sleiman getting his second try of the game. Trent Hodkinson had his kicking boots on and converted with the Bulldogs lead back out to fourteen points.

The Jets would not go away quietly. They needed to score before the end of the half and did so with Jet Isaac Liu making the best use of a penalty and posting a try. Blake Lazarus again got the extras and at half time, Newtown remained in the game at 16-24.

Newtown began the second half in a positive manner yet couldn't find a way over the try line. The Bulldogs defence worked overtime in keeping the Jets out. That hard work would shortly be rewarded when Canterbury’s Brett Lane snapped up a Newtown pass and scored.

It seemed Newtown’s failure to score after several attempts had taken its toll with the Bulldogs all but wrapping up the game thanks to tries from Topou Sopoaga.

A tired and beaten Newtown would score a consolation try through Daniel Tupou but the Canterbury Bankstown Dogs countered in excellent fashion with a last minute try by Harlan Alaalatoa.

It was a hard fought win for the Bulldogs, whilst for Newtown, injuries and loss of key personal to the Sydney Roosters didn't help their situation. Thankfully a much needed bye comes this weekend, which will give the Jets some time to regroup.

The Bulldogs will enjoy a week off and currently sit in second place on the ladder behind the Windsor Wolves who they will take on when the VB NSW Cup competition resumes on July 7.

Final score:  Canterbury - Bankstown Bulldogs 42 defeated Newtown Jets 20

Tries Bulldogs : T Sopoaga 2, D Abou-Sleiman 2, T Cutler, B Lane, R Tagive, H Alaalatoa

Tries Jets : A Alofa, A Henry, D Tupou, I Liu

Conversions Bulldogs : T Hodkinson 4

Conversions Jets : B Lazarus 2

The Bulldogs were too slick for the Newtown defence

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