Roosters and Dogs count cost of brutal clash

Kerrod Holland (left) of the Bulldogs scores against the Roosters.
Kerrod Holland (left) of the Bulldogs scores against the Roosters. PAUL MILLER

THE Roosters edged out Canterbury on Thursday night, but it came at a cost with a host of players leaving the field throughout the match due to injury at Allianz Stadium.

The home side were stunned in the opening 10 minutes, but they clawed their way back into the match to win 28-24 in front of 13,505 fans.

The Bulldogs made the Tricolours pay for costly early errors through tries to Kerrod Holland and Josh Morris.

The Roosters then hit back, and after a try to Boyd Cordner and a double to Daniel Tupou, they hit the lead and held it from there.

Injuries struck before kick off with Roosters prop Kane Evans suffering a calf injury in the warm-up. Chris Smith took his spot on the bench.

Holland's time on the field was short-lived when the Bulldogs winger injured his shoulder in the third minute scoring a try. He tried to play on but left the field in the ninth minute and didn't return.

Blake Ferguson copped a shot in the ribs during the opening part of the game, but played on until the 62nd minute before succumbing to the injury. He'll go for scans to assess possible cartilage damage.

Roosters recruit Zane Tetevano and Bulldogs fullback Will Hopoate's night ended early when the two were involved in a head clash in the 66th minute. Because of the 15-minute concussion test rule, the pair were unable to come back on to the field.

The Bulldogs confirmed following the game at Hopoate had been sent to hospital with "severe concussion and a possible fracture".

Big bopper Greg Eastwood also battled with a knee complaint.

Trent Robinson's decision to move Latrell Mitchell to the centres has proved to be a masterstroke by the Roosters coach.

Mitchell was outstanding in round one against Gold Coast, scoring a hat-trick, and he backed it up again with a number of big plays against the Bulldogs.

He set up Tupou's first try with a cheeky grubber then came up with a one-on-one steal on Eastwood.

"Great awareness," Fox Sports commentator Michael Ennis told Thursday Night League.

"We saw only moments later where he nearly took an intercept.

"He's just got great instinct. He's a really natural footballer."

While the Bulldogs managed to score 24 points, their halves still struggled to guide the side around the park.

A majority of their tries came off the back of errors made by the Roosters.

"Their attack still looked clunky, still struggled to get into a rhythm," Matty Johns told The Late Show with Matty Johns.

"What they'd give for a marquee half. Someone to steer them around the park."

Panellist and former player Brett Finch agreed: "You saw the difference in the two teams."

Topics:  canterbury bulldogs nrl sydney roosters

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