Brisbane slipped further down the NRL table when they crashed to a 44-12 home defeat at the hands of South Sydney.
Beau Champion opened the scoring for the Rabbitohs by latching on to a beatifully-timed pass from John Sutton before the Broncos replied when Corey Parker dived on Peter Wallace‘s kick.
Nathan Merritt raced over for the visitors before he turned provider by sending Champion over for a 16-6 lead at half time.
Eddy Pettybourne crossed from Sutton’s pass after the break and Champion grabbed his hat-trick to give Souths a healthy advantage.
Fetuli Talanoa‘s kick-and-chase score was replied to by the Broncos’ Dave Taylor, but two scores from Dave Tyrell and Merritt wrapped things up for the visitors.
Brisbane Broncos 12
Tries: Corey Parker, Dave Taylor
Goals: Peter Wallace (2/2)
South Sydney Rabbitohs 44
Tries: Beau Champion (3), Nathan Merritt (2), Eddy Pettybourne, Fetuli Talanoa, Dave Tyrell
Goals: Chris Sandow (5/7), Issac Luke (1/2)
Canterbury’s march to the finals took another positive step forward when they overcame Gold Coast 23-16.
Josh Morris raced on to Luke Patten‘s kick for the Bulldogs’ opening score before a barnstorming run from Jamal Idris saw him cross in the corner for the visitors’ second try.
Patten put Morris in for his second score to give the Bulldogs a 16-0 lead at the break.
Two scores from Mat Rogers and Kevin Gordon either side of a Hazem El Masri try gave the home side hope, and Rogers’ second closed the gap yet further.
But the Bulldogs held on and even extended their lead thanks to a drop goal from veteran halfback Brett Kimmorley.
Canterbury Bulldogs 23
Tries: Josh Morris (2), Jamal Idris, Hazem El Masri
Field Goals: Brett Kimmorley (1/1)
Goals: Hazem El Masri (3/4)
Gold Coast Titans 16
Tries: Mat Rogers (2), Kevin Gordon
Goals: Scott Prince (2/3)
Penrith hauled themselves back into the top 8 with a workmanlike 27-14 win over Canberra.
Veteran forward Frank Puletua crossed for the Panthers’ first before Michael Jennings set up Junior Tia-Kilifi grabbed their second.
Strong defence from both teams followed but Brad Tighe‘s score in the shadows of half time eased the home side into a commanding 18-0 lead at the break.
Terry Campese snuck through from dummy-half after the break for the Raiders, who added further to their tally through debutant Daniel Vidot.
Joseph Paulo took advantage of a loose bounce for Penrith’s fourth score and although young winger Jarrod Croker crossed in the corner, Luke Walsh‘s field goal sealed the victory for the home team.
Penrith Panthers 27
Tries: Frank Puletua, Junior Tia-Kilifi, Brad Tighe, Joseph Paulo
Field Goals: Luke Walsh (1/1)
Goals: Michael Gordon (5/5)
Canberra Raiders 14
Tries: Terry Campese, Daniel Vidot, Jarrod Croker
Goals: Terry Campese (1/3)
Premiers Manly overcame a resurgent Cronulla to record a useful 32-26 win at Toyota Park.
Matthew Wright pounced on a bouncing ball for the home side’s first try until the Sea Eagles replied through David Williams.
Veteran prop Brent White burst over from close range to take the visitors ahead but a break from Anthony Tupou allowed Ben Pomeroy to cross for the Sharks in reply.
Blake Ferguson and Kieran Foran traded scores but a miraculous play from Pomeroy allowed Ferguson to grab his second and give the home side a 22-16 half time lead.
George Rose crossed following Trent Barrett‘s sin-binning and the reigning premiers ended the game as a contest by putting on additional scores through Tony Williams and Matt Ballin.
Luke Covell‘s late try for Cronulla served on as a consolation.
Cronulla Sharks 26
Tries: Matthew Wright, Ben Pomeroy (2), Blake Ferguson, Luke Covell
Goals: Luke Covell (3/6)
Manly Sea Eagles 32
Tries: David Williams, Brent Kite, Kieran Foran, George Rose, Tony Williams, Matt Ballin
Goals: Matt Orford (4/7)
Sydney’s well-documented problems were not helped when they crashed to a last minute 30-24 defeat at the hands of the New Zealand Warriors
The Rooster raced into an early lead thanks to tries from Willie Mason and Ben Jones but a mistake from Sean Kenny-Dowall allowed Simon Mannering to reply for the Warriors.
Mitchell Pearce and Patrick Ah Van traded scores but the Roosters held a 18-10 lead at half time.
Two scores from Manu Vatuvei took the visitors ahead but the tricolours clawed they way back in front with a score fromn Tom Symonds.
But the Warriors were not to be denied and a spectacular score from Wade McKinnon and an opportunist effort from Stacey Jones made sure of the result.
Sydney Roosters 24
Tries: Willie Mason, Ben Jones, Mitchell Pearce, Tom Symonds
Goals: Craig Fitzgibbon (4/4)
New Zealand Warriors 30
Tries: Simon Mannering, Patrick Ah Van, Manu Vatuvei (2), Wade McKinnon, Stacey Jones
Goals: Stacey Jones (3/6)
Wests Tigers upset the form guide to record a spetacular 34-14 win over North Queensland.
Matt Bowen crossed early on for the visitors but the Tigers were spurred into action and Benji Marshall side-stepped his way over in reply.
Two tries to Chris Lawrence and Taniela Tuiaki before the break made sure the Tigers held a 16-8 lead at the interval.
Shannon Gallant score first for the Tigers until Carl Webb‘s powerful score in reply looked to be the start of a Cowboys comeback.
But alas it was not to be and with Marshall in irresistable form the Tigers put on two more scores through Corey Payne and Robbie Farah.
Wests Tigers 34
Tries: Benji Marshall, Chris Lawrence, Taniela Tuiaki, Shannon Gallant, Corey Payne, Robbie Farah
Goals: Benji Marshall (5/7)
North Queensland Cowboys 14
Tries: Matt Bowen, Carl Webb
Goals: Johnathan Thurston (3/3)
Parramatta kept their slim finals hopes alive with an excellent win over Melbourne.
Jarryd Hayne collected a loose ball, evaded two defenders and put Jeff Robson away for the Eels’ opener, before Fuifui Moimoi crashed through for their second for a 10-0 lead at half time.
Luke Kelly, on for the injured Dallas Johnson, produced a wonderful pass for Ryan Hoffman to cross but Krisnan Inu‘s miracle pass allowed Todd Lowrie over for the Eels.
Three scores were dissallowed before Billy Slater‘s chip allowed Dane Nielsen to score for the Storm who added another late try through Joe Tomane, but Parramatta held on for the win
Parramatta Eels 18
Tries: Jeff Robson, Fuifui Moimoi, Todd Lowrie
Goals: Luke Burt (3/4)
Melbourne Storm 16
Tries: Ryan Hoffman, Dane Nielsen, Joseph Tomane
Goals: Joseph Tomane (2/3)