ROUND 8 - 2006

Date 30th Apr 2006
Venue Mt Smart Stadium
Coach Steve Folkes
Captain Andrew Ryan
Referee Gavin Badger
Crowd 11604
Bulldogs V Warriors
30 16
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Scorers

Player Tries Goals F Goals Points
Hazem El Masri 2 5 0 18
Roy Asotasi 1 0 0 4
Daniel Holdsworth 1 0 0 4
Willie Tonga 1 0 0 4

Match Review

TEAM LINE-UP:

1. Luke Patten, 2. Hazem El Masri, 17. Sonny Bill Williams, 4. Willie Tonga, 5. Matt Utai, 19. Ben Roberts, 7. Daniel Holdsworth, 8. Mark O'Meley, 9. Corey Hughes, 10. Roy Asotasi, 11. Willie Mason, 12. Andrew Ryan, 13. Tony Grimaldi.
Interchange: 14. Adam Perry, 15. Chris Armit, 16. Brad Morrin, 18. Cameron Phelps

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The Bulldogs have held on to take the two points against a sloppy Warriors outfit in Auckland this afternoon with a 30-16 victory. The Bulldogs managed to control the ball somewhat better than the home side in the opening half and as a result, went into the sheds up 16-8.

The Warriors opened the scoring in the 4th minute via a penalty goal to Tony Martin but soon found themselves behind when Daniel Holdsworth scored his first try in the 'Dogs colours off the back of a Mark O'Meley offload just three minutes later. El Masri made sure of the conversion and the visitors were out in front 6-2 after seven minutes.

The Bulldogs then continued to dominate both possession and field territory and eventually the Warriors couldn't hold on as Roy Asotasi swooped on the loose ball close to the line after a solid hit forced the ball free from Loius Andersons' grasp. El Masri converted the Asotasi try and the Bulldogs stretched their lead to 10 points after the first quarter of play.

With ball handling becoming a problem for the Warriors the Bulldogs had several chances to increase their early lead but poor last tackle options and silly errors became the 'Dogs downfall and eventually they paid a heavy price when the Warriors scored a great try through Koopu after finding himself on the end of a Nathan Fien scoot from dummy-half and scoring amongst heavy traffic. Tony Martin converted and with just six minutes remaining in the opening half the Warriors had put themselves right on the Doggies tail, trailing 8-12.

The Warriors efforts were all taken from them with just one minute remaining as centre Clinton Toopi had a brain explosion and attempted to offload in an impossible position, handing the Bulldogs possession in the Warriors half and some simple backline movement led to a Willie Tonga try on the stroke of half-time. El Masri was unsuccessful from out wide as the Bulldogs went into the sheds up 16-8.

The second half began brilliantly for the Warriors as they crossed the line through Faumuina just two minutes into the half, taking full advantage of a Bulldogs mistake. Tony Martin added the extras and the home side were well and truly back in the match down just 14-16.

Penalties around the ruck were becoming all too common on behalf of the Bulldogs and in the end referee Gavin Badger had enough as he gave 'Dogs prop Mark O'Meley his marching orders. With just 12-men on the field the Bulldogs were sure to struggle in defence, however it didn't soften their attack as they surprisingly found the line courtesy of some great lead-up work through fullback Luke Patten who then found point-scoring wizard Hazem El Masri. He converted his own try and the Bulldogs hit the front with 25 minutes on the clock.

O'Meley then returned to the field as the Bulldogs looked to bury the Warriors in the final twenty. The 'Dogs were given a gift two points after Tony Grimaldi was hit with a high-shot inside Warriors' territory.

El Masri's points-scoring did not end their after the Bulldogs managed to hold out some fierce Warriors attack with under five minutes remaining, he then finished off the home side after a break from Sonny Bill Williams down the right flank resulted in the four-pointer as the Bulldogs held on to win 30-16 and record their fourth win of season 2006.

Adam Perry left the field late in the first half and there are fears he has damaged the medial ligament in his knee which may see him out of action for the blue and whites. Both Luke Patten and Willie Tonga are on report after Patten performed a late shot on Warriors halfback Nathan Fien and Tonga was reported after a lifting tackle during the second half on Warriors Grant Rovelli.

Data provided by Clint Crofts