Bunnies run riot on Good Friday as South Sydney score FOUR tries in 14 minutes to thrash Bulldogs and condemn Canterbury to fifth straight loss
- South Sydney defeated Canterbury 36-16 to seal second straight win
- Canterbury have lost five games in a row and 16 of their last 18th
- Damien Cook scored a hat-trick and Alex Johnston bagged two for Rabbitohs
- Blake Taaffe was perfect from the kicking tee, converting all six tries
- Bulldogs lost Chris Patolo and Braidon Burns to injuries
South Sydney hooker Damien Cook has come back to haunt Canterbury, bagging a hat-trick of tries in the Rabbitohs’ 36-16 Good Friday NRL victory.
Cook scored two tries before the break before completing his treble with less than 15 minutes to go, as the Bulldogs’ winless run was extended.
Alex Johnston crossed for a double and debutant Isaiah Tass touched down late for Souths’ other try while stand-in fullback Blake Taaffe converted all six four-pointers in the absence of Latrell Mitchell.
The Rabbitohs romped to a 36-16 win against Canterbury on Friday evening
The Rabbitohs’ win in front of 30,194 fans at Accor Stadium moved them up to fifth spot on the ladder and condemned Canterbury to a fifth-straight loss under coach Trent Barrett.
Barrett bemoaned a sin-binning to Jeremy Marshall-King towards the end of the first half for repeated ruck infringements.
With the Dogs’ hooker sidelined, Souths ran amok with Cook touching down twice and Johnston once while he was off the field.
At the time he went off the Bulldogs were 6-0 up courtesy of a Brent Naden try.
Damien Cook scored two first half tries as South Sydney took an 18-6 lead
The Rabbitohs have now won two straight games and climbed up to sixth on the ladder
Brent Naden (No 2) put Canterbury ahead early, but the Bulldogs couldn’t hang on to their lead
‘The sin-binning didn’t help but we need to show some more resolve through that period,’ Barrett said.
‘We spoke about putting 80 minutes together. We are conceding ordinary tries when we just can’t.
‘We had a lot of missed opportunities when we had the ball – we were held up three or four times, we had one disallowed with a forward pass and the Naden one [a knock-on call] was contentious.
‘You’ll never play a perfect game of footy, we’ve stuck it with some of the top sides for some periods but not for long enough.’
The Dogs lost Jeremy Marshall-King to the sin-bin halfway through the first half
While Chris Patolo’s afternoon was over after a brutal head clash with skipper Josh Jackson
To make matters worse, young forward Chris Patolo was taken to hospital after a sickening head clash with Bulldogs captain Josh Jackson, while centre Braidon Burns pulled up with a hamstring injury.
The reshuffle forced Barrett into moving Matt Burton to centre for the second half with Brandon Wakeham partnering Kyle Flanagan in the halves.
Souths looked to take advantage of the chaos but for Johnston’s second try they didn’t have much to offer in response early into the second half.
Canterbury had a few tries chalked off but were able to cross after Cook scored his third. Josh Addo-Carr and Marshall-King got over either side of Tass grabbing his try on debut.
The Bulldogs have now lost five straight games and 16 of their last 18 outings
‘We showed some resilience in that first 20 minutes,’ Souths coach Jason Demetriou said.
‘The Dogs were coming at us really hard. We probably dropped our level a bit [at the end of the game]. We’re building and we are heading in the right direction.
‘Our pre-season didn’t lend us to be at our best to start the season. I can’t commend these guys enough.
‘We were beaten in golden point by Melbourne and lose off an intercept try in Brisbane to start the season, so to win three in the last four [shows] we are heading in the right direction.’
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