Bull­dog spirit shines through in brave win

Sunday Territorian - - SPORT - SCOTT BAI­LEY BULLDOGS

CANTERBURY lost out­go­ing five-eighth Josh Reynolds to a ham­string in­jury, but showed fight­ing spirit to beat Can­berra 16-10 last night.

Down to 15 men af­ter they also lost in­spi­ra­tional cap­tain James Gra­ham to con­cus­sion early, the Bulldogs over­came a half­time deficit to hold out the Raiders at ANZ Sta­dium.

Reynolds, who signed a four-year deal with the Wests Tigers on Wednes­day, limped from the field late in the first half to a stand­ing ova­tion from Bulldogs fans.

He will have scans to de­ter- CANTERBURY CAN­BERRA Ref­eree: Crowd: mine the full ex­tent of the in­jury. But their re­main­ing 15 play­ers ex­hib­ited all the pas­sion the in­jured pair have be­come fa­mous for.

Half­back Moses Mbye set up two tries in his first 80-minute stint in the halves in more than a month, while sec­ondrower Adam El­liott also scored two tries.

Full­back Will Hopoate was also ter­rific on re­turn from a se­ri­ous fa­cial in­jury. In his first game in seven weeks, he ran 295 me­tres and set up El­liott’s sec­ond try mid­way through the sec­ond half to give the Bulldogs the lead. Af­ter they trailed 10-4 at the break, Josh Mor­ris changed the mo­men­tum of the match when he ran onto an Mbye pass be­fore El­liott scored the match-win­ner in the 58th minute.

The Bulldogs then held out for a nervy fi­nal 20 min­utes as the Raiders re­peat­edly at­tacked their line with­out suc­cess. Ear­lier, Can­berra for­ward Josh Pa­palii looked a man on a mission when he laid on the Raiders’ first try of the night.

A day af­ter be­ing sacked from the Aus­tralian Test side from a pre-sea­son drink- driv­ing in­ci­dent, he charged onto an Ai­dan Sezer ball be­fore putting on a late off­load for Jar­rod Cro­ker to score.

Can­berra then took their half­time lead as hooker Josh Hodg­son strolled un­der the posts fol­low­ing a 60-me­tre break from winger Nick Cotric.

But they were un­able to build any pressure in the sec­ond half, sink­ing to a sec­ond straight loss.

Mean­while, South Sydney cap­tain Sam Burgess has es­caped pun­ish­ment for an ap­par­ent shoul­der charge on Manly cap­tain Daly Cher­ryE­vans.

Burgess col­lected a blind­sided Cherry-Evans high and off the ball the lead-up to a first-half Sea Ea­gles try in the Rab­bitohs’ 48-6 loss on Fri­day. Cherry-Evans did not touch the ball in the play.

How­ever Burgess was not charged by the match re­view com­mit­tee yes­ter­day.

Pic­ture: AAP IM­AGE

Joshua Jack­son of the Bulldogs is tack­led by Joe­seph Leilua of the Raiders dur­ing the Round 9 NRL match at ANZ Sta­dium last night

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