Bulldogs Dominate Storm

The Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs have registered their ninth victory of the season and made their way back into the top eight after a 39-nil drubbing of the Melbourne Storm in front of 16,406 fans at ANZ Stadium.


After leading 12-nil at the break the bulldogs then ran in five tries in the second half to put the Storm away.


Coach Des Hasler was happy with the display.


We got the result we were after today, Hasler said. We were disappointed after the effort in Mackay last week and the guys took it upon themselves this week to turn it around.


The addition of (Josh) Reynolds was a good one, especially after losing Frank Pritchard and Sam Kasiano just this morning.


Grub (Reynolds) is a positive kid and he just loves playing footy.


The Bulldogs had mixed news prior to kick-off with Sam Kasiano (sick) and Frank Pritchard (injured) being ruled out of the side with Martin Taupau and Tim Browne coming in but in positive news Josh Reynolds was brought into the side after being released by the NSW side at the expense of Joel Romelo.


The opening exchanges were played through the centre of the park but was Reynolds who made the first real impact on the match when he kicked a 40/20 giving the Bulldogs a repeat set in the 12th minute. The St George Dragons junior showed plenty of emotion after the kick urging his players on to make something of the opportunity. The side joined in and on just tackle two James Graham got the ball out the back to Reynolds who quickly shifted it to Inu who went into open space before handing it off to Perrett who cruised over in the north-east corner. Trent Hodkinson couldnt convert from the sideline with the Bulldogs lead left at 4-nil.


The visitors answered back with a 40/20 of their own soon after but they lost the ball on just the first tackle, much to the delight of the home fans.

Tony Williams earned a penalty for his side just shy of the half-way line and a Hodkinson kick for touch gave the Bulldogs a full set of six starting from 40m out from the Storm line. The Bulldogs had spotted the up and in defence from the Storm and it was Hodkinson who put in a beautifully weighted cross-kick for his good mate Mitch Brown and the former Shark and Tiger took it on the full and planted it down to score untouched in the north-west corner.

Hodkinsons attempt at conversion from the sideline hit the upright with the score remaining 8-nil after 24 minutes.


With a minute to go before the half-time siren Williams put a great shot on Storm interchange forward Jordan McLean, forcing the error which then gave the Bulldogs possession 40m out from the Storms line. The early hit-ups were taken by forwards before the blue and whites again chose to shift the ball out to the left again with Hodkinson giving the ball to Ben Barba who then gave it to Lafai. The centre then threw a dummy out to Brown before stepping and coming back inside to charge over to score. The referees chose to check it upstairs on the video but both Luke Patten and Luke Phillips had no concerns and hit the green button. Hodkinsons conversion attempt again hit the upright, which sent the Bulldogs to the sheds leading 12-nil.


The second half started with the Melbourne Storm dominating possession and four sets at the Bulldogs would have seen a lesser side give away some points. But the men in blue and white out on the field had a different idea and it was a Perrett intercept that sparked a three try rout. Perrett used his experience to read an out ball by Storm half Ben Hampton and plucked it out of the air and then ran 83m untouched to score under the uprights. Hodkinson converted his first try of the afternoon with the lead out to 18-nil after 49 minutes.


Just three minutes later it was the Bulldogs on show once again. This time Bega junior Dale Finucane took the ball forward and passed the ball out the back to Hodkinson who carried it a couple of metres and pushed it on to Williams who charged on to the ball and flew over to score under the posts. Hodkinson again converted to make it 24-nil.


The next set saw the Bulldogs go over once more through Brown. This one was started by Captain Michael Ennis who got it out the back to Graham. The Englishman then had quick hands out to Williams, then Hodkinson, then to Lafai who was into open space and as he drew in the fullback he got it out to Brown who crossed for his second of the afternoon. Hodkinson missed the conversion and the score remained 28-nil.


Ten minutes later it was Perrett again who registered his hat-trick for the afternoon. A shift to the right ended in the hands of Krisnan Inu who took it forward and when met by the defence flicked the ball out to Perrett who cruised over to score. Hodkinson was having a tough afternoon with the boot and couldnt convert with the score left at 32-nil.


The next and final try came off the back of some work by two of the most skilful players in the game, Barba and Reynolds. After receiving a kick down field, Barba brought the ball back and then handed it off to Perrett. As Perrett met the defensive line he passed it back to Barba who used his skill and speed to break through the first line of defence and into open space. From there he passed the ball inside to Reynolds who after knowing that he didnt have the speed to make the line, he then had Barba backing up and got the ball to him and the Queenslander streaked away, celebrating as he planted the ball down. Hodkinson converted to make it three from eight with the boot for the day.

With just seconds remaining Hodkinson received the ball deep from dummy-half and he opted to take the shot at field-goal and he hit it flush, sending it straight through the uprights to add to the Storms woes and record a 39-nil victory over the defending Premiers.


BULLDOGS 39 (Perrett 3, Brown 2, Lafai, Williams, Barba Tries; Hodkinson 3 Goals; Hodkinson 1 Field Goal)


Def.


STORM 0


At: ANZ Stadium


Crowd: 16,406