Bulldogs Have Too Much Bite for Sharks

The Bulldogs have this afternoon registered their second victory of the year with a win over the Sharks, 24-8 in front of 10,131 fans at Bluetongue Stadium.


It was four tries to one with both Mitch Brown and Sam Perrett bagging doubles.


Coach Des Hasler said it was good to get the two points.


It was a pretty important two points for both sides and Im pleased we were able to prevail and get the win, Hasler said. Weve been diabolical with the ball the last couple of weeks but it was good we held possession and got through some sets.


We still have work to do but its important we use today and build on it.


There was just one change to the starting side named earlier in the week with Kiwi International Frank Pritchard coming into the starting side and Josh Jackson moving back to the interchange bench.


It was a tough start for the Bulldogs with a rough call going against Pritchard for dropping the ball in the play the ball then back to back penalties to the Sharks gave them good field position and Todd Carney elected to take the shot at goal and converted to give them an early 2-nil lead.


The opening try came in the 22nd minute through winger Sam Perrett. Off the back of a penalty to the Bulldogs for the home side being offside they were handed a great attacking opportunity starting on the 30m line. It was a pretty disorganised set but on the last tackle the ball was given to halfback Trent Hodkinson who sent the ball into the air of his boot and it was Perrett up against Nathan Stapleton with the Kiwi international coming down with the ball to score. Hodkinson had the kicking duties for the day and converted to put Bulldogs in front 6-2.


The next 20 minutes saw both sides have opportunities that ended with turnovers in possession due to mistakes. The Sharks had two chances down each of the flanks but they both ended with the ball going over the sideline due to poor final passes. The Bulldogs chance came with the blue and whites working it to the left and the catching the Sharks rushing up in defence but it was the final tap on from Josh Morris on to Mitch Brown that was ruled to have gone forward.


With five minutes remaining in the opening half the Bulldogs were able to extend their lead through a try to former Shark, Brown. It again came on the last tackle with Hodkinson putting in a grubber which rebounded off a Sharks boot and regathered by Ben Barba. Barba carried it across field and when met by the defence he was able to get a hand free and get the ball to Brown who went over five metres in from the western touchline. Hodkinson again converted and put the Bulldogs in front 12-2.


A Jayson Bukuya loose carry and mistake handed the Bulldogs possession just 20m out. Again the Bulldogs worked it until the last tackle and with that Sharks defence again rushing up Hodkinson again opted for the grubber in behind the line. It was Brown verse his opposite Beau Ryan with Ryan just getting a hand to the ball first, forcing it dead. With that being the final play of the game it was the blue and whites who went to the break leading 12-2.


It was just seven minutes into the second half before the scoreboard ticked over again with the Sharks the benefactor. Interchange forward Wade Graham charged down the left and he got past Tim Lafai and into open space and as he approached Barba at the back and gave it inside to Luke Lewis who went the remaining 20m untouched to score under the posts. Fullback Michael Gordon converted with score now 12-8 after 48 minutes.


The 62nd minute saw the Bulldogs extend their lead through Brown who went across for his second try of the afternoon. After a Isaac De Gois forward pass 40m out from his own line that gave the Bulldogs the ball. It was then an arm on the ball that gifted the blue and whites another set. From there a great set piece was played out and it went through the hands of Captain Michael Ennis on to Hodkinson, then Pritchard who found Brown before going round to score untouched. Hodkinson converted for the lead to go out to 18-8.


The match was sealed in the 74th minute with Perrett taking the risk and coming out on top with a smart intercept on the Sharks 40m line that saw him take off and score before being surrounded by his delighted team-mates. Todd Carney took the ball to the line and threw the pass with the overlap but Perrett snatched it from thin air and went away to score. Hodkinson converted to get the victory 24-8.


Thats how it remained with the Bulldogs holding on for a 24-8 victory.


BULLDOGS 24 (Perrett 2, Brown 2 Tries; Hodkinson 4 Goals)


Def.


SHARKS 8 (Lewis Try; Gordon 2 Goals)


At: Bluetongue Stadium


Crowd: 10,131