Match Report – Second Half Collapse Lets Bears Down

Image: A big crowd on the hill as Adam Doueihi scores - Intrust Super Premiership | Round 16 | North Sydney Vs Canterbury-Bankstown | North Sydney Oval | 25/06/2017. Photo Steve Little www.redandblackzone.com.

It was a tale of two halves at North Sydney Oval last Sunday, as the Bulldogs ran away with a convincing 32-14 victory.

The Bears came out of the gates firing. Crisp sunny conditions saw the red and black pack led by Robbie Rochow, George Burgess and Anthony Cherrington make for some effective footy up the middle. It’s always a battle of the pack when these two sides meet.

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A fortunate penalty on the halfway led to great field position 15 minutes in to set up Adam Doueihi’s try. The five-eighth simply danced through the Bulldogs defence, stepping into traffic and through under the posts. 6-0 to Norths with momentum.

The Bulldogs were off form repeatedly, giving away careless penalties. The Bears were unlucky to extend their lead during the half, and it was Canterbury who crossed next in the 25th minute with Josh Cleeland benefiting from a Renouf To’omaga break. The score 6-6 with the conversion.

Luck was again on the Bears side though, as the kickoff was fumbled by the Bulldogs. Later that set Eli Levido popped over a penalty goal. The Bears were 8-6, as they capitalised on ill discipline.

As the half wrapped up, Canterbury managed to take the lead with 5 minutes to go. Reimis Smith diving over in front of the Molly Dive Stand, followed by an impressive sideline conversion, giving the dogs a 12-8 lead at the half.

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The Hill was buzzing and had a lot to be hopeful about with the first half performance from Norths. The forward pack was particularly impressive, putting the opposition on the back foot.

However, any momentum the Bears carried into the half was lost as the second kicked off.

Despite a promising few sets, including a half chance from an explosive Jack Gosiewski break, it was all uphill for the home team from there.

Tries to the Bulldogs on the 52nd and 56th minutes saw the score sitting at 22-8, the Bears well and truly looking at an insurmountable comeback. 67 minutes in, the deal was sealed with a try to Canterbury’s hooker Craig Garvey, compounded by a try 6 minutes later to Richie Kennar, shattering the hopes of the home faithful 32-8.

Consolation came in the dying minutes for the Bears with the man Abbas Miski diving over in the Duncan Thompson corner, giving the fans a minor spot of joy to leave on.

A rough day out for the Bears ended up 32-14. A bright spot on the day was the crowd with families and friends alike. Always good to see the hill packed.

Norths will take on the Panthers in a 7:30 pm Friday night showdown at North Sydney Oval this week. See you there.

CANTERBURY-BANKSTOWN BULLDOGS 32 (tries: Joshua Cleeland, Reimis Smith, Joshua Bergamin, Craig Garvey 2, Richie Kennar, conversions: Rhyse Martin 4),
def NORTH SYDNEY BEARS 14 (tries: Adam Doueihi, Abbas Miski, conversions: Eli Levido 2, penalty: Eli Levido).

6 Eli Levido
3 Edward Murphy
1 Sitiveni Moceidreke
4 Piki Rogers
5 Abbas Miski
18 Adam Doueihi
7 Luke Kelly
8 David Tyrrell
9 Bradley Deitz
19 George Burgess
11 Cameron Murray
20 Anthony Cherrington
10 Robbie Rochow

12 Jack Gosiewski
13 Cheyne Whitelaw
15 Toby Rudolf
17 Brett Greinke