The NRL is now set to dump opening next year’s season in the USA unless than can get a sponsor to cover an expected loss of $1 million.
Melbourne Storm has rebounded from last week’s shock loss to Penrith to beat South Sydney 29-28 tonight as the 2018 finals kicked off. It was a see-saw battle with seven lead changes, but a Cameron Munster field goal with 2 minutes remaining sealed the match for the home side. The Storm will have a week off while the Rabbitohs play in the semi final next week against either Brisbane or St George Illawarra.
Dodgy refereeing there. Should have been a 28-22 win. Oh well
There was a controversial call late in the second half with a Storm forward pass which led to a South Sydney try.
I didn’t get to watch the game properly, but it looked like a really exciting game!
Great start to the finals series.
So, Bunnies to face the winner of Sunday’s Elimination final between the Broncos and Dragons. Most likely Broncos I think, Dragons have really just limped into the finals with some ordinary performances of late.
Penrith 27 d New Zealand Warriors 12
Sydney Roosters 21 d Cronulla 12
Semi finals next week:
Friday - Cronulla v Penrith (Allianz Stadium)
Saturday - South Sydney v Brisbane or St George Illawarra (ANZ Stadium)
The Roosters’ preliminary final at Allianz Stadium on September 21 will be the last ever sporting match to be held at the venue before demolition.
The Sydney v Roosters match at Allianz Stadium drew 24588 at the stadium, which is ok for a Finals Footy match. The Roosters are in 1st place and want to be a bigger and bolder team.
Not sure about everyone else, but I probably wouldn’t mind seeing the South Sydney Rabbitohs and Cronulla Sharks play the 2018 NRL Premiership on September 30.
With the Rabbitohs and Sharks having broken long premiership droughts in recent years, a Grand Final between both teams (who I’m certain are hoping the wait for their next premiership isn’t anywhere near as long as the last one was) seems like something that would generate a massive crowd, TV ratings and overall media interest. One could also imagine the excitement levels of a particular Sydney news reporter potentially rivalling those of many Redfern & Cronulla residents!
Is this actually going to happen? Of course at this stage, it’s a case of wait and see.
That would be a great outcome!
Though Cronulla will find it harder now, as they (assuming they beat Penrith next Friday night) have to beat the Storm in Melbourne for a place in the decider, and as star backrower Wade Graham limped off with what looked to a serious knee injury in the 13th minute and looks unlikely to miss the rest of the finals. They had couple of tough calls go against them against the Chooks, but they also bombed three tries.
But realistically from what I saw this weekend, I think we are now looking at a Storm vs Rabbitohs decider. I think Souths will be beat Broncos/Dragons and then the Roosters.
With today’s 48-18 win against the Broncos, the Dragons will be playing the Rabbitohs in the 2nd semi-final next Saturday at ANZ Stadium.
This result also means that five (technically four and a half since the Dragons are a half Sydney/half Illawarra team) of the six remaining teams are from Sydney.
Great win by the Dragons today.
I didn’t see that one coming given their ordinary form over the last month.
Amazing performance by the dragons massive boil over good rivalry V Souths. Both games should be great next week.
WELL, that was a bit closer than I would have liked.
I thought the Sharkies were home and hosed at 18-0 just before half time but the Panthers came back strongly in the second half to lock it up at 20 all, before a Chad Townsend field goal broke the deadlock.
Though injuries are becoming a problem, as they lost Wade Graham last week and tonight lost captain Paul Gallen to a rotator cuff injury and Luke Lewis to a calf problem.
Melbourne in Melbourne next week awaits them for one spot in the Grand Final.
Along with the game, I’ll be looking forward to some interesting banter on this forum between yourself and @AustralianAerial next week!
Crazy end to the Souths v Dragons game!
THREE Adam Reynolds field goals have sunk the Dragons in the second one point win for this weekend.
3 field goals haven’t been kicked by the same team in a game since 1971.
Just goes to show how even this year’s comp has been.
I’m going to try and get to the Storm/Sharks game on Friday (much to the delight of @SydneyCityTV and @Radiohead I’m sure ), but it’s going to kill me knowing my Magpies are in the AFL prelim on the other side of Richmond Station.
Someone check on me on Friday night
I know what you mean, Tigers vs Pies will no doubt be the hottest ticket in town next weekend, but I think Storm vs Sharks will be well attended (I reckon they should get around 20,000 to that game still, which will be pretty good considering).
We have an oracle in our midst
Worth pointing out that I’ve made it to an NRL final before an AFL one, which is probably blasphemous in an Aussie Rules city like Melbourne. Maybe I need to move north
Melbourne have reached their third NRL grand final in a row after beating Cronulla 26-6 in tonight’s preliminary final, in front of a bumper crowd of 26,621 at AAMI Park. The scoreline however did not reflect how dominant the Storm were. Playing his last match at home, Billy Slater scored two tries but his shoulder charge in the first half on Sharks winger Sosaia Feki would be under scrutiny over the weekend. If Slater is charged by the match review committee, he could be docked 200 penalty points, equivalent to a one match suspension. His career will be over unless he contests the charge at the NRL judiciary next week.
The Sharks’ loss marked the end of the playing career of club great Luke Lewis after 18 years and two premierships (2003 with Penrith and 2016 with Cronulla). He scored his team’s only try of the game with 10 minutes to go.