Souths seal top-four spot in brutal derby

South Sydney sealed a place in the top four ahead of the NRL playoffs with a brutal 16-10 win over Sydney Roosters who remain second.

The Rabbitohs started as the better side and were rewarded with two points from Adam Reynolds but the Roosters responded well to take control of the match. Cooper Cronk and James Tedesco combined for the former to score before Joseph Manu’s incredible offload saw Billy Smith cross.

The Bunnies needed to be first to score in the second half and they were when Campbell Graham snuck through on the right. And in fact, the Rabbitohs took the lead after only ten minutes of the second half when Cody Walker finished off a brilliant move involving Damien Cook, Tevita Tatola and Alex Johnston.

Reynolds added a further penalty as Souths held on for a crucial win.

Rabbitohs: Doueihi, Johnston, Graham, Gagai, Allan, Walker, Reynolds, S Burgess, Cook, Knight, Sutton, Su’A, Murray; Interchanges: Lowe, Amone, Tatola, Nicholls
Tries: Graham, Walker; Goals: Reynolds 4

Roosters: Tedesco, Tupou, Mitchell, Manu, Smith, Hutchison, Cronk, Waerea-Hargreaves, Verrills, Liu, Cordner, Crichton, Butcher; Interchanges: Radley, Collins, Tetevano, Tupouniua
Tries: Cronk, Smith; Goals: Mitchell
On report: Waerea-Hargreaves (74) – high tackle

Full match reports of all this weekend’s NRL games will feature in Monday’s League Express.