A relatively comfortable win against the Penrith Bulldogs has turned off several of their original absentees to a 30-18 win at Penrith Stadium.
Despite the absence of co-captains Nathan Cleary and Isaac Yew, as well as the likes of Jerome Louie, Brian Too, Stephen Crichton and Liam Martin, Penrith had enough firepower to deal with a Bulldogs team that depended on the magic moment of the two. Forgotten boys.
In each of Canterbury’s first two attempts – a short and a long range – the ball was steered to Josh Ado-Carr through Matt Burton’s boots, while the former Panther added a third to the Bulldogs in a single attempt.
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It wasn’t enough, though, and Zeman Salmon’s late effort gave Penrith some breathing space as they walked to the finish line.
The story of stand-in playmaker Kurt Falls has been circulating throughout the week – Cleary’s former schoolboy partner, who made his debut in first grade tonight after doing business in Penrith’s lower grade for several years.
He couldn’t have asked for a better start as his kick from former Bulldog Chris Smith for the opener before Penrith added three more first-half attempts through Dylan Edwards, Taylan May and William Kikau.
Oddly enough, without all that firepower, it was Penrith’s highest scoring in the first half of the season.
Dogs find a lifeline from somewhere
The Bulldogs continue to struggle, even with a new coach – although under Interim Coach Mick Potter they have given the top three offensive performances of the year in terms of three game point scores.
Penrith will likely see all of their original stars return next week when they play against Newcastle until Sunday afternoon.
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