Mixed results as NRL opens up - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Mixed results as NRL opens up

By Brent Read 09/05/2004 09:13:19 PM Comments (0)

Normality returned to the top and bottom of the National Rugby League ladder this weekend - with the Sydney Roosters setting the pace and South Sydney propping up the table.

But the competition from second to 14th remains as unpredictable as ever.

Case in point - Manly came into Sunday's clash with St George Illawarra without a win this season at Brookvale Oval.

The Dragons, admittedly without a handful of their best players, had won four of their past five - but they were no match for the inspired Sea Eagles, who helped captain Steve Menzies celebrate his 250th first grade game for the club with a 21-10 victory.

At EnergyAustralia Stadium, Mark Hughes celebrated his recall to first grade with a win as the Knights stunned the league leading Bulldogs 32-6.

The Knights were without five internationals - Andrew Johns, Ben Kennedy, Timana Tahu, Steve Simpson and Robbie O'Davis - but were too good for the 'Dogs.

"It was a real important win for the club," coach Michael Hagan said.

"I think we showed we can knock off the heavyweights of the comp now."

The premier Penrith, with captain Craig Gower inspirational, enjoyed a big win over South Sydney 38-4.

The Rabbitohs, minus 13 first grade players through injury, lost lock Ashley Harrison with a jaw injury in the second half and had impressive forward Mark Minichiello on report for a high tackle on Preston Campbell in the 59th minute.

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