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Red V storm home to defeat Dolphins

A perfect second forty saw the Dragons surge home to a 26-6 win over the Dolphins at Netstrata Jubilee Stadium on Sunday afternoon.

A dire opening stanza saw the visitors take a four-point advantage into the sheds before Shane Flanagan’s half-time pep talk saw the Dragons kick into gear and produce one of their best halves of 2024.

Just four days on from a 60-minute State of Origin performance and thrusted into an unfamiliar role as a result of a first-half injury, Jaydn Su’A pieced together a dominant performance laying on a late try to send the Red V faithful jubilant.

Tyrell Sloan threatened early for the Dragons off a Ben Hunt inside ball only to be dragged down by his opposite in front of the sticks.

A Mathew Feagai bust earnt the Dragons a fresh set on the attack soon after only for the Dolphins to clean up a Hunt grubber and put an end to the raid.

Moses Suli made a massive defensive play for the Red V a quarter of the way in stopping a surging Tesi Niu one-on-one before the cavalry arrived to drag the Dolphins winger into touch.

Jeremy Marshall-King limped off halfway through the opening stanza pushing Max Plath into the hooking role and bringing Tevita Pangai Junior into the action.

Mathew Feagai was denied the opening points of the encounter despite on-field officials awarding the four-pointer with replays showing that the ball had come loose in his diving attempt.

Round 17 WIN at HOME!!

The winger was taken from the field in the aftermath with a shoulder injury concern forcing brother Max onto the left wing and Su’A into the centres with Luciano Leilua coming into the second row.

The Dragons burnt their captain’s challenge a half-hour in with replays showing that Blake Lawrie had spilt the ball rather than had it tugged out by a defender.

Kyle Flanagan knocked over a penalty goal courtesy of a Pangai Junior high shot to end the stalemate and put the Dragons up 2-0.

The Dolphins answered moments short of the break off a bouncing, fifth-tackle pass through Niu with Jamayne Isaako adding the extra two to earn a 6-2 advantage.

Leilua was denied the hosts’ first try early in the second half upon video review but earnt his side a penalty with Raymond Faitala-Mariner crashing over the following set off a Hunt short ball to tie things up.

Connelly Lemuelu knocked the ball on in pursuit of an Isaiya Katoa grubber soon after to give the Dragons a 20-metre restart as the score remained locked up.

The Dragons put an attacking scrum to good use moments later with Sloan sweeping around to create an overlap and send Christian Tuipulotu sliding into the left corner to make it 10-6.

Sloan backed up his assist with a four-pointer of his own a couple sets later off a barnstorming Su’A charge and offload down the right-hand corridor.

With the wind swirling, Flanagan made the necessary adjustments to nail the conversion from just inside the touchline and make it a double-digit Dragons lead.

A Katoa 40/20 put the Dolphins on the attack only for a spirited Su’A and Feagai effort to drag Kodi Nikorima into touch and repel the invasion.

The Dragons found another the next possession via a sweet exchange of passing between prop duo Jack de Belin and Francis Molo with the former burrowing his way over to finish off a nifty wraparound play.

Kurt Donoghoe was binned for the Dolphins in the aftermath of the try for a high shot in the lead-up.

NRL Round 17 Highlights: Dragons vs Dolphins

Competing against just 12 men, the point-scoring continued for the Dragons with Jacob Liddle picking up a loose ball that had been raked out of the arms of Tom Eisenhuth to dive over under the sticks and extend the lead to 20.

The theme of the afternoon was illustrated best in the final stages with Suli coming out of nowhere in a brilliant display of desperation to prevent Herbie Farnworth from scoring off his own toe-ahead.

Acknowledgement of Country

St George Illawarra Dragons respect and honour the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders peoples, where our games are played, our programs are conducted and in the communities we support.

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