If you would desire full-length match reports, they are available in League Express.
We thought we’d round-up each game, from South Sydney’s struggle with Penrith to Canterbury’s below-mediocre performance against Wests Tigers, by re-capping on each game-changing moment.
Round seven had it all – two injuries within two minutes, impeccable finishes (as always!), try-saving tackles and even a golden-point finish – so with that being said, enjoy this brief re-cap.
Ill-disciplined Rabbitohs prayed on by Panthers
Nathan Cleary scored eight points during an eight-minute period whereby Souths had just 11 men, with Latrell Mitchell and James Roberts sin-binned, which proved to be the differential. Wayne Bennett’s men were surprisingly scrappy in their handling and discipline, making 12 uncharacteristic errors and conceding eight penalties.
Penrith are currently second place and have been a tough side to overcome with just one defeat, to Parramatta, so far. They’ve already knocked off three of the competition’s strongest sides with victories over Sydney Roosters, South Sydney and Melbourne.
Electrifying Storm place half-century on Warriors
Following the sacking of their former coach, Stephen Kearney, last week, this contest was now going to be more challenging than ever imaginable.
A mauling from Melbourne took effect throughout with five players chiming together for nine tries in total. Only six interchanges were used, and three head assessments, meaning this attack could reach a new level should every interchange be utilised.
Injury concerns over-shadow Roosters resilience with St George
Several positional changes in the team purely showed the extent of their pre-existent injuries. Joseph Manu was moved to full-back, Brett Morris had transitioned to left centre and Ryan Hall was drafted into the squad.
The reigning premiers suffered two separate ACL injuries, to Victor Radley and Sam Verrills respectively, within two minutes of one another, leading to a complaint being made regarding the Bankwest Stadium pitch.
Despite making more errors and conceding more penalties than their opposition, Sydney were able to show their class and held on to capture one of their hardest fought victories in recent times.
Cowboys control Newcastle
North Queensland wanted redemption after a disappointing loss to Wests Tigers last week and came out firing with a staggering and unpredictable five-score lead at the break having amassed 26 unanswered points.
Newcastle began to slowly mount a comeback and managed to cut their deficit to twelve points with five minutes remaining. Fortunately, their defence withstood any further pressure and held on to record their first victory in four games.
Broncos battered by threatening Titans
It’s been a really rocky and unprecedented road for Brisbane this year. They won both of their opening games pre-lockdown, including the infamous XXXX derby, but are now on a five-game losing streak and sit in a heavily discouraging 15th place.
On a more positive note, Justin Holbrook is finally showing his extensive coaching qualities down under and now holds two victories this season, over Brisbane and Wests Tigers. After earlier defeats to Canberra and Parramatta, it seems the former Saints boss is beginning to spread his magic at the Gold Coast.
Parramatta prevail over Canberra in golden point
After an incredible game with Canberra, the Eels leaped back into the forefront of the competition ladder. They’ve really intrigued many supporters and have strong potential to reach the finals later this year – they are playing some of their most expansive rugby to date and have one of the most talented left edges in the form of Michael Jennings and Maika Sivo, who each scored a four-pointer this past weekend.
Arriving from Wigan, George Williams is having superb success in the NRL and his performance on Saturday was on par with prior expectations. He set-up Charnze Nicoll-Klokstad with a perfect lofted kick in the closing stages, which contributed to the game going to golden point, and has been instrumental within Ricky Stuart’s side, holding seven try assists to his name.
Unfortunately, Parramatta ensured they took all the spoils in the eighth minute of extra time through Clint Gutherson, which left Elliot Whitehead and George Williams (pictured below) dis-heartened.
Tom Trbojevic’s absence causes Manly defensive chaos
Shaun Johnson, Matt Moylan and Chad Townsend ran riot for the Sharks in Gosford and, between them, assisted every single of their side’s seven four-pointers.
Manly were without Tom Trebojevic, who will spend up to two months sidelined with a hamstring injury, and it proved to be a major problem. Hopefully, this will be a minor blip in form as they started the season strong with impactful victories over both grand finalists last year, Sydney Roosters and Canberra Raiders.
Bulldogs battered by terrific Tigers
Canterbury are sat bottom of the ladder and, with Luke Thompson’s arrival not immediate due to quarantine rules, seem unlikely to climb up any time soon. They may be averaging around eleven points per game but, when looking at facts, have failed to score more than six points on four separate occasions, showing their noticeable try-scoring drought.
They did hold off the almost guaranteed imminent reign of terror for twenty minutes but predictably, Wests dominated thereafter with 36 unanswered points, and led every single attacking statistic by a considerable margin, such as offloads and runs.
Penrith Panthers 20-12 South Sydney Rabbitohs
Melbourne Storm 50-6 New Zealand Warriors
Sydney Roosters 26-12 St George Illawarra
North Queensland Cowboys 32-20 Newcastle Knights
Brisbane Broncos 12-30 Gold Coast Titans
Parramatta Eels 25-24 Canberra Raiders
Manly Sea Eagles 22-40 Cronulla Sharks
Canterbury Bulldogs 6-34 Wests Tigers
Upcoming Fixtures: Round Eight
Melbourne Storm v Sydney Roosters (Thursday)
Canberra Raiders v St George Illawarra (Friday)
Parramatta Eels v North Queensland Cowboys (Friday)
Gold Coast Titans v Cronulla Sharks (Saturday)
New Zealand Warriors v Brisbane Broncos (Saturday)
Wests Tigers v Penrith Panthers (Saturday)
Manly Sea Eagles v Newcastle Knights (Sunday)
Canterbury Bulldogs v South Sydney Rabbitohs (Sunday)