The Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs Jersey Flegg team have impressed in their trial against the Penrith Panthers, winning 38-4.
It was a dominant display from the club’s under 21s team and although the Panthers scored early in the match, the Bulldogs responded with seven unanswered tries to claim victory.
Canterbury led 22-4 at half time, before adding three further tries after the break.
The effects of having not played a lot of football over the past 12 months was evident through their match fitness, as well as both the Dogs and Panthers making a host of handling errors throughout the game.
The team missed a number of players who will feature in their round one team, but impressive performances from Ryan Gray who was clinical out of dummy half controlling the game, lock forward Kurtis Morrin played big minutes and got through a heap of work in attack and defence, while prop forward Mosese Pope showed improvement in attack as well as defence with strong carries and solid first contact.
In what was an impressive win over the Panthers, head coach Luke Vella was happy with the improvement from his side following last week's hit out against the Dragons, but knows there is still a lot of work to be done before round one.
"I am happy with the improvement from last week, but there is still a long way to go. Overall they need to fix their basic errors if they want to be a threat in the competition and the completion rate needs to improve. I'm looking forward to a final hit out against Cronulla this week before leading into round one. It's exciting to see some of the boys who missed out on footy last year getting their hands on the ball and getting some game time. I was happy with our leaders who stepped up during the Panthers trial when needed and I'm hoping this week’s final pre-season game puts us in good shape heading into our opening game of the season against Melbourne," Vella added.
Bulldogs 38 (Zac Rumble 2, Kurtis Morrin, Chase Chapman, Paul Karatiana, Terri Taia, Tuarae Rawhiti tries: 5 goals)
Panthers 4 (Ethan Clark-Wood try)
Jersey Flegg Highlights: Trial v Panthers
IMAGES SUPPLIED: Bryden Sharp Photography