Dragons hold on to beat Knights - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Dragons hold on to beat Knights

By Steve Jancetic 21/05/2005 10:46:43 PM Comments (0)

St George Illawarra staved off a spirited Newcastle fightback to hold for a 18-16 NRL win in a spiteful clash at Energy Australia Stadium on Saturday night.

St George Illawarra coach Nathan Brown accused the Newcastle forward pack of targeting his inexperienced front rowers with high shots as the Dragons rolled on for their fifth straight win despite the absence of five players on duty with the NSW State of Origin squad.

For the Knights, it continued their season of misery, which has now stretched to ten straight losses to open the season.

Brown said referee Shayne Hayne failed to take control of a game that turned ugly at times, with three players put on report for high tackles and Dragons prop Justin Poore and Knights half Dane Campbell sin-binned for fighting.

"I expected them to test us ... I'm not saying I expected them to test us in that way but I knew they'd test us," Brown said.

"I think they overstepped the mark and the referee should have taken a much harder stance on it and then the game wouldn't have got out of control.

"The referee kept letting them get away with it and then our discipline went out the window. If Jason Ryles had of been on the field I doubt they would have had the courage to do it."

Knights props Craig Smith and Josh Perry could both be in trouble with the video match review committee over their high shots, particularly Perry, who was lucky to stay on the field for his high hit.

Dragons second rower Lance Thompson was also placed on report for his high tackle on Jarrod Mullen, which left the rookie No.6 unable to see out of one eye for the second half.

Newcastle almost stole the game from the visitors when Knights centre George Carmont closed the deficit to two with nine minutes remaining, but the red and whites were able to hold on for the win.

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