Dogs within one game of NRL grand final - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Dogs within one game of NRL grand final

By Brent Read 19/09/2004 08:40:39 PM Comments (0)

Melbourne coach Craig Bellamy predicted the Bulldogs and Sydney Roosters would play in this year's NRL grand final after watching a resurgent Brent Sherwin put his side to the sword at Aussie Stadium.

Sherwin has struggled with a back-related hip injury for much of the past month but showed no signs of the problem, engineering the Bulldogs' 43-18 victory before a crowd in excess of 23,000.

The 'Dogs will now face Penrith on Saturday night at Aussie Stadium to determine who will meet the winner of Sunday's North Queensland-Sydney Roosters game in the premiership decider.

"The back was playing a little on my mind," Sherwin said.

"I tried to put it out of my mind. Today it felt better."

It certainly looked better.

Sherwin, strangely out of sorts in his side's opening finals loss to the Cowboys eight days ago, got off to a flyer today, having a hand in three of his side's opening four tries as the Bulldogs surged to a 22-6 lead by halftime.

In the process he shaded another of the game's brilliant playmakers, Melbourne's Matt Orford.

"We have a little saying when we play Canterbury about Sherwin - you have to expect anything off him on the fifth tackle and we just stood back waiting for him to kick it, or pass it, or run it," Bellamy said.

"All of a sudden we were 16 points down. That was the disappointing thing for me with that start."

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