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Penrith Panthers v Canterbury Bulldogs

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So Penrith get back in the winner's circle after last week's narrow loss to the Storm. Both sides had their chances but the Panthers take the points. That's it from us, thank you for joining us.

Moylan after the game: "I was confident (with the conversion). I've been practicing a fair bit. We just stuck in there and grinded out the win."

Penrith nearly found a way to throw away a game they dominated for long periods, but they scrape home in the end and were just about worthy winners. 18-16.

Nerves of steel as Moylan slots the conversion from the sideline and the Panthers go nuts. They pull off a great escape.

Panthers! They work the ball all the way down the field and a huge cut-out ball finds Naiqama and his try locks it up. Kick to come to win the game.

Know your limitations - Idris tries a little grubber and, not surprisingly, it goes straight to a Dog. Time is running out for the home side.

Kevin Naiqama is getting a bit of treatment near the touchline, but he looks OK to continue.

Can the Panthers find a hero? If not they will curse not putting more points on the board when they were in total control.

Hodkinson with his first miss of the year, but his Dogs are leading 16-12 with eight minutes to go.

The Dogs are in again and it's that man Reynolds pulling the strings once more. He finds Drury Low out wide and he dives over and suddenly the visitors are in front.

The Dogs have been the better side after halftime but the Panthers have the home crowd. Who takes the chocolates here?

And that's a superb touch-line conversion looking into the sun from Hodkinson and we're all tied at 12-12 with just over 10 minutes left.

Morris finally sparks the Dogs with a bit of magic, including a goose step, before Reynolds finds Corey Thompson in the corner from the play the ball and we actually have some points.

Distinct lack of imagination in attack here from the Doggies. The scoreboard is sitting in quick-dry cement.

Some gut-busting defence on their own line somehow allows the Panthers to keep the Bulldogs out. It's all hands on deck here.

We've got 20 minutes left and it's still 12-6. But the Doggies are looking threatening here.

Docker is placed on report after a lifting tackle on James Graham. It didn't look great to be honest.

Yep, decent effort from Lafai but it's no try and the Panthers survive.

The referee calls try as Tim Lafai ends up with the ball and dives over in the corner. But it looks like he's dropped it and we're going back upstairs.

Bit of a holding pattern here. The points are sitting there for whoever can find some form and a cool head.

Penalty to the Panthers is the call and they opt to take the shot from virtually in front rather than go for the try. Moylan makes no mistake and it's a 12-6 lead.

Time for a review. Suspicion of offside here as Tyrone Peachey scoops up a loose ball and crosses the tryline.

Mistakes aplenty to start the second half. Would either team like to win this game?

Idris with two big 'don't-argues' to signal his intent early in the second half. Tim Grant then makes a galloping run, but spills the ball after a strip from Perrett. Huge let-off for the visitors.

We're back underway.

As expected...

Penrith should have a far more comfortable lead than four points. It wouldn't surprise for the Dogs to hit back after a halftime spray from Hasler. But the Soward-Simmons combination is the Dogs' biggest worry.

Unfortunately no pix at this stage of the hog.

And that is halftime. Penrith dominated possession and really should be much further in front than 10-6. All to play for after the break.

The crowd makes its feelings clear, with a chorus of boos ringing out as Simmons is cleaned up off the ball from Corey Thompson. Nothing given from the refs.

With a couple of minutes left, the Bulldogs will be very happy if they can reach the break just 10-6 down.

The Dogs survive this time, but Hasler needs to find a way to put some clamps on Soward and/or Simmons.

It's that combo again - Soward kicking to Simmons' wing after some beautiful lead-up work, but there's a suspicion he went into touch. We're going upstairs.

Hodkinson converts his own try and is now 10-from-10 in conversions for the season. Impressive. 10-6 Penrith.

This time the Bulldogs make it count. The ball goes through three sets of hands before Josh Morris finds Hodkinson, who has an open paddock in front of him and touches down.

The Dogs' best chance for points comes to nothing as a Reynolds bomb from 10m out is eventually distinguished by the home side.

Practice makes perfect. Moylan's second conversion attempt from the exact same spot is successful this time. 10-0 to the home side after 22 minutes, Doggies already in a spot of bother.

Penrith finally get some reward for their dominance and it's a familiar move. Soward find Simmons with another perfect cross-field kick and the winger times it to perfection to touch down.

Chance! Trent Hodkinson scoops up a ball just outside his try line and scampers past halfway. But the visitors rush one of their first try-scoring opportunities and turn it over.

Some decent Dogs defence goes unrewarded as they give away a silly penalty. Here's another opportunity for the home side.

Can we get a blood pressure gauge on Des Hasler? His Bulldogs have been half-asleep through the opening 15 minutes.

Referee Ben Cummins was in a good position and correctly called lost ball over the line. Dogs survive.

And just like that Penrith crashes over, but there is a question mark over the grounding.

One team has come to play thus far - and it's not the Bulldogs.

It looks like Perrett is up for a long night. Soward is peppering his right side of the field with some accurate kicks through the first 10 minutes.

Somebody stop him! Adam Docker makes some great metres, shrugging off two tackles, before the Bulldogs snuff out the danger and force a turnover.

Sam Perrett extinguishes another Soward bomb. Doggies in need of some possession here.

Matthew Moylan fails to convert, but it is the Panthers off to a fast start, 4-0 after five minutes.

Penrith earn a repeat set of six and make it count, with Jamie Soward's pinpoint kick finding David Simmons, who takes a neat catch in mid-flight. He then pops the ball back to Dean Whare, who acrobatically completes a brilliant Panthers try.

And we are underway.

Here comes the home side in their mostly white strip. I reckon we could be in for a close game this afternoon.

The Bulldogs are out on the ground. Kick off isn't far away.

Only one position separates the two clubs on the ladder, with the match looming as an early test between the seventh-placed Dogs and eighth-placed Panthers.

Penrith are favourites for this match, with new recruit Jamal Idris to make his home debut.

Penrith Panthers v Canterbury Bulldogs

At Sportingbet Stadium, Saturday  4.30pm

Referees:  Ben Cummins, Gavin Reynolds

Head to Head: Bulldogs 48 Panthers 32 Drawn 3

Last clash: Bulldogs 34 bt Panthers 14 at ANZ Stadium, Rd 25 2013.

Tab Sportsbet: Panthers $1.57, Bulldogs $2.45

FootyTAB: Bulldogs +4.5

AAP writes: The Panthers fell agonisingly short against the Storm last week, missing a penalty goal while the Bulldogs bounced back from their round one loss to the Broncos by thumping the Sharks 42-4. The Panthers’ Jamie Soward replaces Isaac John in the halves, with prop Tim Grant also replacing Brent Kite in the 17 against an unchanged Bulldogs. The Panthers arguably looked more impressive in their loss against the ever impressive Storm than the Bulldogs did in their win over a toothless Sharks.

Key: New Panther Jamal Idris was brilliant in his first game in eight months. He’ll look to win over fans in his first home game, especially against one of his former clubs.

Tip: Panthers

Michael Chammas writes: Des Hasler referred to the Panthers as the form team of the competition. It’s no surprise to see Hasler praise his opposition, but he will probably do so again after this game. The Panthers should have upset Melbourne last week and are almost back to full strength. The Bulldogs bounced back last week but lack the firepower out wide to overcome the Panthers. Panthers by 8.

PANTHERS: Matt Moylan, Kevin Naiqama, Dean Whare, Jamal Idris, Josh Mansour, Jamie Soward, Peter Wallace (capt), Nigel Plum, Kevin Kingston (capt), Sam Mckendry, Lewis Brown, Elijah Taylor, Adam Docker. Interchange: James Segeyaro, Jeremy Latimore, Tyrone Peachey, Tim Grant.

BULLDOGS: Sam Perrett, Mitch Brown, Josh Morris, Chase Stanley, Corey Thompson, Josh Reynolds, Trent Hodkinson, Aiden Tolman, Michael Ennis (capt), James Graham, Frank Pritchard (capt), Tony Williams, Dale Finucane. Interchange: Josh Jackson, Patrick O’Hanlon, Tim Browne, David Klemmer, Moses Mbye (one to be omitted).

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  • Turn the 8-3 penalty count around and it's a different result. The game is still decided by the men-in-the-middle. With all sides so closely matched penalties are like gold and when the Panthers got 3 in the last 5 minutes that was that. Sure they played well - but were they really more than 100% better disciplined that the Dogs? Not that we can criticize the refs - the game isn't exactly democratic - but it is dying a slow death.

    Date and time
    March 23, 2014, 10:57AM
  • The cutout pass for the panthers final try was clearly forward.

    Date and time
    March 22, 2014, 7:37PM
  • Panthers were great. Lost their focus for a significant period in the second half, but were deserving winners after just being ousted last week. Brilliant game.

    Date and time
    March 22, 2014, 7:30PM
  • Canterbury need to buy more front rowers lol

    Gymea Bay
    Date and time
    March 22, 2014, 6:38PM
  • Can we stop the NFLisms in the commentary?? You do not Touch Down for a try, you ground the ball for a try. ouching down is what you do with the ball in your own in-goal to make it dead (watch it in Rugby Union ).

    Big Bird
    Date and time
    March 22, 2014, 6:30PM
  • Woo hoo; go panthers (some people read Fairfax to follow the games!)

    wear the fox hat
    Date and time
    March 22, 2014, 6:22PM
  • A Penriff Panfer, your name says it all. Obviously a great jusdge of footy teams and all. Go the Doggies.

    QLD Dog
    Date and time
    March 22, 2014, 6:16PM
  • The Bulldogs are overrated. They won't make the semis this year

    Penriff Panfer
    Date and time
    March 22, 2014, 4:45PM

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