Roosters beat odds to overcome Bulldogs - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Roosters beat odds to overcome Bulldogs

By David Beniuk 18/07/2010 06:21:03 PM Comments (0)

Sydney Roosters captain Braith Anasta admits his 200th NRL game at times felt like a "nightmare" as his side overcame a spate of controversial calls to pip Canterbury 36-32 at the Sydney Football Stadium on Sunday.

In an afternoon classic unfortunately overshadowed by refereeing controversies, a 75th-minute try to second rower Mitch Aubusson completed a brave comeback from the Roosters.

Anasta's side had been down 30-18 early in the second half after a dubious forward pass call had led to a Luke Patten try, one of several decisions to go against the home skipper.

But the Roosters scored the last three tries to send a crowd of 19,121 which had been livid for much of the game into raptures.

"It was a very emotional day for me," man of the match Anasta said.

"I just wanted to put everything I could possibly put into today's game.

"I just didn't want it to be ruined with something that's just out of my control, it was as simple as that.

"I might have looked frustrated out there, I was just determined to win and do anything I could to win on this special day for me.

"I've got to admit I thought someone was going to wake me up from a nightmare there at one stage."

Roosters fans were left fuming by two forward pass decisions and a no-try ruling against Anasta by video referee Sean Hampstead.

A 29th minute try to Dogs prop Michael Hodgson appeared to come moments after a pass from dummy half Michael Ennis had travelled forward.

And a controversial call on Anasta's quick hands to send Joey Leilua away a minute after the break, with the Bulldogs leading 24-18, had the crowd seeing red.

But all hell broke loose when Anasta was ruled to have knocked on in the 53rd minute when he pinched his own grubber from 300-gamer Brett Kimmorley and a try was disallowed.

The sides went tit for tat with tries in a scintillating opening half hour before Canterbury's Mickey Paea gave his side the advantage at the break.

When Leilua scored his second in the 62nd minute a Roosters comeback began before a Bryson Goodwin penalty goal provided some breathing space at 32-24.

Todd Carney's second, in the 71st minute, made it a two-point ball game before Aubusson's late clincher.

"I reckon he had one of his better ones, right up near the top," Roosters coach Brian Smith said of Anasta.

"Our guys responded pretty well to everything that happened today and kept their composure.

"It takes something special to overcome all that today and win." The Roosters won three straight for the first time since 2008 to return to the top four, while the Bulldogs are in trouble six points outside the top eight.

"We probably blew it in the end, I thought we had the game in our keeping," Canterbury coach Kevin Moore said.

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