St George Illawarra Dragons held off a strong South Sydney Rabbitohs comeback to maintain their 100 percent record with a 16-12 victory.
Widdop got the Dragons off to a good start with a penalty after George Burgess was penalised for holding down. But Nene MacDonald couldn’t make the start better. He was held up over the line by some desperate Rabbitoh defending and then denied by a sliding Hymel Hunt.
The Dragons, who were monopolising possession weren’t to be denied for long. Euan Aitken beat Greg Inglis and left him on the floor as he dived over for the game’s opening try. Widdop was off target with his conversion but on target with a penalty shortly after.
It wasn’t MacDonald’s half as he was denied for the second time by the video referee when he adjudged that Tariq Sims had obstructed Adam Reynolds.
Souths registered their first points on the hooter when Adam Reynolds slotted over a penalty but the second half couldn’t have started much worse for the away side. A John Sutton pass hit the floor and was picked up by Ben Hunt. He then fed Matt Dufty who streaked off to score by the posts.
Souths did well to stay in the game and scored their opening try, with eight games to go when Cody Walker slid across the Dragons’ line and cut through. Inglis’ try three minutes later brought the Rabbitohs back to within four but St George held on.
Dragons: Dufty, MacDonald, Aitken, Lafai, Nightingale, Widdop, Hunt, Graham, McInnes, Vaughan, Frizell, Sims, de Belin; Interchanges: Leilua, Mann, Ah Mau, Latimore
Tries: Aitken, Dufty; Goals: Widdop 4
Rabbitohs: Johnston, Gagai, Inglis, Hunt, Jennings, Walker, Reynolds, T Burgess, Cook, G Burgess, Sutton, Crichton, Murray; Interchanges: Doueihi, Nicholls, Tatola, Clark
Tires: Walker, Inglis; Goals: Reynolds, Doueihi
Full match reports of all this weekend’s NRL games will feature in Monday’s League Express.