South Sydney Rabbitohs comfortably dispatched with New Zealand Warriors, racking up a 40-12 scoreline at Bankwest Stadium.
The Warriors took an early lead through David Fusitu’a but from then on, despite suffering a sin bin to Cody Walker in the first half, the Rabbitohs controlled the game with Alex Johnston weighing in with a brace of tries.
After Fusitu’a’s early score on his return to New Zealand’s side, Souths replied when Campbell Graham crossed. Kodi Nikorima had missed his conversion but levelled the game up for New Zealand with a penalty after South Sydney’s try.
But the halfback would have to spend ten minutes in the sin bin for a professional foul on the breaking Dane Gagai and that allowed Souths to take control. In the next set, Adam Reynolds went over for a try. Then Braidon Burns got on the end of Cody Walker’s deft kick.
With Nikorima back on the field, Walker would then be sin binned for repeated team offences by him and his Rabbitohs teammates. But that didn’t stop the Bunnies. A quality cut-out pass from Latrell Mitchell provided a try for Alex Johnston.
The Bunnies had it all their own way in the second half. Cody Walker crossed before Damien Cook stole a try from dummy half. With ten to play, Johnston secured his double after another kick from Walker. Agnatius Paasi did manage to grab a consolation try with a barrelling run with four minutes to play
Rabbitohs: Mitchell, Gagai, Graham, Burns, Johnston, Walker, Reynolds, Tatola, Cook, Burgess, Su’A, Lowe, Murray; Interchanges: Knight, Mago, Amone, Sironen
Tries: Graham, Reynolds, Burns, Johnston 2, Walker, Cook; Goals: Reynolds 5
Sin bin: Walker (34) – repeated team offences
Warriors: Tuivasa-Sheck, Beale, Herbert, Hiku, Fusitu’a, Nikorima, Green, Taunoa-Brown, Egan, Burr, Katoa, Harris, Blair; Interchanges: Lawton, Faamausili, Murchie, Paasi
Tries: Fusitu’a, Paasi; Goals: Nikorima 2
Sin bin: Nikorima (23) – professional foul
Full match reports of all this weekend’s NRL games will feature in Monday’s League Express