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Recap | The Knock-On Effect NSW Cup - Round Nine

Round Nine of The Knock-On Effect NSW Cup kicks-off on Friday with Panthers v Eels and is followed by three games on Saturday, including Dragons v Bulldogs streamed live on NSWRL TV at 1:45pm and Sea Eagles v Magpies televised on Fox League at 12:40pm. The round will be closed out on Sunday with Bears v Jets at 3:00pm.

Panthers v Eels

Sea Eagles v Magpies

Dragons v Bulldogs

Rabbitohs v Knights

Bears v Jets

 

Penrith Panthers v Parramatta Eels

NSW Cup Highlights | Panthers v Eels Round Nine

Penrith take out 'Battle of the West'

Patrick Staveley

Game summary

Penrith Panthers have consolidated their spot on top of the ladder in the Knock-On Effect NSW Cup with a 25-8 victory over the Parramatta Eels.

The Eels looked primed for an upset when Sean Russell pounced on a Jordan Rankin grubber after just three minutes on his return to the field. The lead was short-lived though as Penrith began to dominate field position and made the most of it when Sunia Turuva finished off a backline move.

Robert Jennings piled on the pain for the Eels when he hit through a yawning gap in the Parramatta defence to extend the score to 12-4.

The second half started with more of the same as Penrith winger Thomas Jenkins scored off a cross-field kick as they stretched out to an 18-4 lead.

The Eels were able to stay within reach as Jayden Yates scored off a Jake Arthur grubber although Eddie Blacker put the result beyond doubt when he burst through the line to swan dive under the posts his sixth try of the season.

Key moment

The Eels started well and looked good until Penrith’s first try completely changed the momentum of the game and it was mostly all Penrith for the rest of the game.

Talking points

It’s scary how similarly Penrith’s NSW Cup side plays to the first grade side. Relentless in defence and reducing run metres, piling four or five defenders in tackles to force errors and tackle Eels players over the sideline.

In attack the forwards just roll forward and chew up valuable metres to lay the platform for the backline to work their magic. As they are in first grade, Penrith are the benchmark for this competition. 

What's next?

Both sides enjoy a bye next week before returning in a fortnight with Parramatta hosting the Sea Eagles and Penrith travelling to face the second-placed Bears. 

 

Blacktown Workers Sea Eagles v Western Suburbs Magpies

NSW Cup Highlights | Sea Eagles v Magpies Round Nine

Magpies pick up first win of the season over resurgent Sea Eagles

Hugo Lumb

Game summary

The Western Suburbs Magpies held off a late comeback from Blacktown Workers Sea Eagles to win 30-26 in a high-scoring match at 4 Pines Park on Saturday.

The Sea Eagles started off strong with fullback Jake Toby crossing in the first minute, but the scores were soon locked at six-all after Magpies winger Israel Ogden found his way over the line.

The game transformed into a see-sawing affair with both sides putting on points through Jacob Sykes for Blacktown (18th minute) and Johnny Mitsias for the Wests (22nd minute). Later some defensive lapses from the Blacktown side allowed two easy tries for the Magpies through Ogden (28th minute) and Fa'amanu Brown (36th minute). The teams ran in at halftime with the score-line at 24-12 – the Magpies finishing with a great defensive effort to hold out a Sea Eagles side desperate for a late four-pointer.

The second half started with Sea Eagles gaining the ascendency and Jake Toby crossing for his second try of the day in the 50th minute, before following up for his hat-trick in the next set with a length of a field try, off the back of a barnstorming run from winger Raymond Vaega. Masi Fidow was unable to convert the back-to-back tries, bringing the scores to 24-20.

The game broke open in the 63rd minute as back-rower Tom Freebairn showed some great aerial skill to score. Jock Madden’s conversion extended the lead to 30-24 with 15 minutes remaining.

Blacktown threw everything at Western Suburbs in the closing stages, willed on by a hill full of local supporters and even sparking hope among them with a fourth try to Jake Toby in the 75th minute.

Yet the Magpies managed to keep their cool, recording a much needed 30-26 victory over the Sea Eagles.

Talking points

Jock Madden and halves partner Zane Camroux were outstanding today as they willed their team to victory. Camroux provided energy in attack and defence with quick line speed and creative ball running. Madden showed off his first-grade experience with a solid kicking game and five from five conversions.

In a losing side it was fullback Jake Toby who put up one of the best individual performances of the 2022 season. The small fullback finished the game with four tries to his name and was the focal point of the Sea Eagles’ attack.

Key moment

Despite Blacktown going on to lose the game, the try to Toby in the 53rd minute was one of the highlights of the match, as the Sea Eagles were coming off the back fence after scoring just three minutes earlier.

On the third tackle of the set, Vaega burst through some tiring defence and threw a swift offload to James Segeyaro who passed it on to Toby, who then ran 70 metres to score seal his hat-trick. While it ultimately didn’t decide the game, the try reignited a Blacktown side lacking energy and showcased the athleticism and pace of the crafty fullback.

What’s next?

The Blacktown Workers Sea Eagles take on the high-flying North Sydney Bears at North Sydney Oval in Round 10.

The Magpies will have the week off after their first win of the season, and can build on that momentum when they face the Bulldogs in Round 11.

 

St George Dragons v Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs

Bolstered Bulldogs end Dragons' winning streak

Blake Edwards

Game summary

A new-look Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs - spearheaded by the returning Bailey Biondi-Odo – has ended the St George Illawarra Dragons’ four-game winning streak in style, running out 26-6 victors at Centenary Field on Saturday. 

A number of key inclusions were made ahead of the clash with the Dragons adding plenty of experience into their forward pack with George Burgess, Josh Kerr and Josh Ford. The Bulldogs changed their halves pairing with Brandon Wakeham and Biondi-Odo, complemented by the strike power of Jayden Okunbur out wide. 

It was a clunky start to the clash with both sides struggling to settle into a rhythm. The Dragons looked the most dangerous during this period, with Jackson Ford finding open space on two occasions, but the hosts were unable to turn the opportunities into points.

This is something the Red V would rue as the visitors clicked into gear minutes later, when Brandon Wakeham threw a beautiful cut-out pass to find Okunbour on the edge, with the lanky outside back grounding the ball in the corner. 

The Bulldogs had now found their mojo, mounting pressure on the Dragons with each attacking set. A heads up play by Wakeham – kicking a beautiful 40/20 – would lead to the Dogs’ second try in the ensuing set, when halves partner Biondi-Odo chased his own grubber kick close from close range and planting the ball down under the posts. A further try to Josh Stuckey at the half-hour mark gave the Bulldogs a handy 16-0 lead at halftime. 

Biondi-Odo’s short kicking game was key after the resumption, laying on two crafty kicks for his side which both resulted in four pointers to Zach Docker-Clay and Declan Casey – extending their lead to 26-0 with just over 30 minutes remaining. 

The Dragons were their own worst enemy, coughing up possession on multiple occasions as well as ill-discipline allowing the Bulldogs to mount further pressure. The Dogs did a great job keeping the Dragons’ strike weapon, Tyrell Sloan, quiet, with the livewire fullback unable to stamp his mark on the contest. 

Dragons playmaker Braxton Wallace crossed for a late try which wouldn’t have pleased Bulldogs coach David Tangata-Toa. Regardless of the late try, however, the Bulldogs’ overall performance showed once again why they are genuine premiership contenders, claiming a 26-6 victory. 

Talking points

The performance from the Bulldogs’ halves will catch the eye of NRL coach Trent Barrett, who is struggling to find the perfect halves pairing in 2022. The kicking game of Wakeham and Biondi-Odo was first class, leading to three of the Bulldogs five tries. 

The Dragons struggled without the strike of half Jayden Sullivan. His omission also impacted Sloan, who was relatively quiet after starring in the Dragons’ past three matches.

Jackson Ford was the standout forward for the Saints in what was a tough outing, and he will be hopeful an NRL return is on the horizon.

Key moment

The first try to Okunbur was the key moment in this match. It seemed to give the Bulldogs’ side a confidence boost early on, allowing them to find their rhythm in attack. 

What’s next?

Both sides will enjoy a bye next weekend, but in Round 11 the Dragons host the Knights in Kogarah while the Bulldogs head to Lidcombe Oval to face the Magpies.

South Sydney Rabbitohs v Newcastle Knights

NSW Cup Highlights | Rabbitohs v Knights Round Nine

 

North Sydney Bears v Newtown Jets

Jets swoop late to overrun Bears

Jason Hosken

Game Summary

A hat-trick to winger Samuel Stonestreet has seen Newtown Jets jump North Sydney Bears into second spot on The Knock-On Effect NSW Cup ladder after an exciting 40-28 victory at North Sydney Oval.

Coming off a last start loss to the ladder-leading Panthers, Newtown were desperate to make amends. A fortuitous six-again from the opening set launched the Jets attack, and by the ninth minute they had two tries on the scoreboard before the home side had even touched the ball.

Jonaiah Lualua finished off a Kade Dykes cutout pass for the first, before his wing partner Samuel Stonestreet extended the margin to eight points with a try in the opposite corner.

When Jets playmaker Luke Metcalf strolled across in the 16th minute, at 14-0, Newtown looked to have one hand on the Frank Hyde Shield. 

A fumbled bomb by the Jets proved decisive and when North Sydney lock Renouf Atoni crossed after the error, it sent the Bears on a rampage. Winger Vuate Karawalevu then bagged a double in quick succession, and after the 30 minute mark the Bears had their noses in front 16-14. 

Newtown struck back to lead 20-16 at the break when Stonestreet finished a Kayal Iro bust for his second try of the half.

The second half started much like the first, only this time it was the Bears who opened the scoring. Replacement forward Ben Thomas crashed over first and when Karawalevu completed a hat-trick of his own after 58 minutes, Norths had marched clear 28-20.

In a topsy turvy contest, it was Newtown who finished in a rush. Four tries in a scintillating 15 minutes were enough to blow the final margin out to an unlikely 12 points.

A racking touch finder by halfback Braydon Trindall swung the momentum. Lualua slid over in the next set before Iro raced away five minutes later to give Newtown the lead.

Hooker Jayden Berrell and Stonestreet crossed late to blow out the margin in what was a thrilling end-to-end contest.

Talking points 

Newtown’s Kade Dykes proved instrumental in the Jets victory. An early long ball set up the first try and when he wasn’t probing in attack, the fullback was extinguishing several threatening raids.

North Sydney created just as many opportunities as Newtown. Expansive attack saw Karawalevu cross for three, and with a little more luck the long-striding winger would have had four if not for the Jets’ scrambling defence.

Kayal Iro is certainly one to watch. The powerful centre tormented the Bears’ right edge defence all afternoon. With two try-assists before the break, he did it all on his own with 12 minutes to go, racing 60m to put Newtown in front.

Key moment 

North Sydney led 28-24 when centre Toa Mata'afa was ruled to have lost the ball over the try-line with 12 minutes left to play.

A try may well have been enough to see the Bears hold on. From the moment Iro raced away to score in the next set, Newtown were never headed.

What’s next?

North Sydney are back at home next week against Blacktown in Saturday’s live match on Fox League.

Newtown have the bye before lining up to face Mounties in Round 11 at Henson Park.

Acknowledgement of Country

New South Wales Rugby League respects and honours the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.