18 Mar 2017

Warriors hand Bulldogs first win of season

9:30 am on 18 March 2017

The Canterbury Bulldogs have won their first National Rugby League match of the season beating the Warriors 24-12 in Dunedin.

The win ended a six game losing streak for the under fire Bulldogs coach Des Hasler.

A resilient defensive effort combined with attacking potency was the key to Canterbury's win.

The win was also the Bulldogs' sixth in seven games against the Warriors.

The Warriors had most of the possession in the first 20 minutes and dominated at times but couldn't create the attacking cut-through to claim the two points.

Warriors forward Simon Mannering on the burst against the Bulldogs.

Warriors forward Simon Mannering on the burst against the Bulldogs. Photo: Photosport

Canterbury looked solid through Brett Morris and debutant Marcelo Montoya, and produced the goods defensively with two 40-tackle performances from Michael Lichaa and Josh Jackson.

Bodene Thompson scored for the Warriors in a dominant opening quarter, but Canterbury was eventually rewarded through Moses Mbye after the halfback darted through three defenders.

The Warriors' left-edge was exposed for a second time in 10 minutes by a slick backline move which ended with winger Morris securing his second try of the season.

Mbye wasn't able to convert, but the Bulldogs trotted off with a deserved 10-6 halftime lead.

The Warriors came out after the break and controlled the opening 20 minutes of the second half but, as had been the case for the 2017 season so far, couldn't turn possession into points.

The Warriors missed an early chance to regain the lead when Solomone Kata knocked on over the line, before Shaun Johnson collected an inside pass to hand his side a two-point lead.

A win looked beyond reach for the Bulldogs, but Montoya ultimately benefited from scratchy edge defence to score, before Morris put the icing on the cake.

The Warriors also lost wing Manu Vatuvei to a knee injury.

It's unclear how long he'll be sidelined.