It was far from convincing, but Penrith’s September dream remains well and truly alive after a 16-8 victory over the Bulldogs at Pepper Stadium tonight.
Canterbury failed to score a point in the second half as Penrith limped to the eight point win in front of 8,727 fans in chilly conditions at the foot of the Mountains.
Penrith led 8-0 after 20 minutes thanks to a penalty goal and a Peter Wallace try, but the Bulldogs managed to even the ledger by half-time with a penalty shot of their own and a soft try to livewire five-eighth Josh Reynolds.
The game remained in the balance throughout the second half but the major breakthrough came when Dallin Watene-Zelezniak – who had an awkward night with his hands – crossed in the corner to put the Panthers up 12-8.
Tyrone Peachey confirmed the win with a try 10 minutes from full-time, moving the Panthers to within a whisker of the top eight.
In some bad news for the Panthers, forward Leilani Latu was sent to hospital with a suspected broken jaw.
Panthers coach Anthony Griffin was particularly pleased with the performance of fullback Dylan Edwards.
“He did a great job tonight. He was under a heap of pressure at times,” he said.
“It was a really good effort from him.”
Troy Dodds is the Weekender’s Managing Editor and Senior Writer. He has more than 15 years experience as a journalist, working with some of Australia’s leading media organisations.