Uncool Dad’s Bunnies TV Round 19 Recap.

The shortened round that was Round 19 has been completed and I think all of us are glad that that was the last bye-affected round. That’s right, every week from now ‘til the finals will have either 7 or 8 games. There’s still plenty to talk about in what was a 5 game round so let’s get stuck into Uncool Dad’s Round 19 Recap…

Tigers v Sharks

There wasn’t too much excitement in the footy world about the opening game of the round. The Tigers were coming off a horrific loss to the Cowboys in Townsville whilst Cronulla had an easy win against the Dragons. It seems the Sharks are continuing their charmed run in the NRL draw just like last year. They often get to play the bottom sides at their worst and rack up points accordingly. Of course, this catches up with them at finals time..

Wests Tigers v Sharks highlights.

Unsurprisingly, the Tigers came to this clash with a lot more focus and effort than last week. However, it didn’t matter that much as Cronulla always had too much class. Scores were level at half time but the Sharks ran away with it in the second stanza. Yet another easy kill for the Sharks, a better effort from the Tiges. Things get a whole lot tougher for Cronulla next week with a trip to Auckland. Wests have the Knights in Newcastle.

Dragons v Raiders

I feel like a broken record writing about these Canberra and Dragons games each week as pretty much the same things always happen. Canberra – grab a big lead, let the other team back into the game, scrape home for a close win. St George-Illawarra – score a few flashy tries but never really threaten due to constant club drama.

This is basically what happened in the sole Friday game. The Raiders piled on the points and looked like they were finally going to get a big win. Canberra couldn’t do it though, they let the Dragons back into the game. Only a late try from the Raiders guaranteed the victory. They have been consistent and are travelling well but the close wins are not good for their for and against. 

St George-Illawarra went better in this game. Their attack seemed a bit more free-flowing without the black cloud of Ben Hunt lurking around. Ultimately though, they were never really in this and Shane Flanagan has a serious job trying to resurrect this proud club.

Dragons v Raiders highlights.

Eels v Warriors

Game 1 of a shortened Super Saturday was at Commbank for the Eels v Warriors clash. After coming up with zeros with the Penrith clique, Freddy Fittler had thrown his hopes into salvaging something out of Origin with the Eels and the Rabbitohs. As a result, both squads had been decimated. Parra looked very thin and were even missing their heart and soul, Clint Gutherson, who had been brilliant in the games where they had been missing troops. The Warriors, however, had pretty much a full complement and would have been keen to make amends to last round’s big loss to Souths.

This is how things played out and after a bit of resistance from Parra, the Warriors started to run roughshod to register a 46-10 victory. Disappointing for Eels fans but they’d won 5 in a row up to this game and are in a good spot with the Titans at home next week. The Warriors are well and truly back on track and host the Sharkies at Mt Smart next round.

Eels v Warriors highlights.

Rabbitohs v Bulldogs

Off to Accor for our last Sydney game in a very long time with the World Cup Soccer kicking off soon. Despite being severely understrength, I was quietly confident Souths could get the 2 points. Last week’s effort against NZ was one for the ages and I was sure the club would have gained a lot of confidence from that. Plus we were playing the Doggies, who had lost by 60+ to the inconsistent Knights..

There was a real NSW Cup feel about our line-up, Sele being a last minute out didn’t help either. Still, I was excited to see our young guys go around. There seems to be a great deal of promise in the next generation at Souths. Throwing them all in at once was going to be the tricky part!

We’re On Here!

After only a few minutes, captain Tom Burgess crashed over under the posts for the easiest of tries. It was so straightforward he didn’t even have a chance to drop it over the line! I turned to my longtime Rabbitoh friend – Craig – and made the fatal mistake of saying something like “We’re on here! The Dogs have got nothing!” Needless to say, Canterbury then ran in three unanswered tries. Their offload and passing game really troubled the inexperienced Souths side. We may have Tyrone Munro but the Dogs unearthed a sharp winger of their own in Blake Wilson who proved particularly elusive. The fact that the Knights put 66 on them last week had certainly helped their focus too. Bad timing for us…

Dogs On Top

The game ground on and Canterbury stayed on top. The effort from our boys couldn’t be denied however. Rookie ref Liam Kennedy was making an artform of being inconsistent in his decisions. I don’t like whinging about referees as you only really notice them when you’re down but he certainly gave us no favours. The amount of penalties and 6 again calls the Dogs got for unexplainable things seemed excessive. As I mentioned last week, some of these calls are so crucial but referees just pull them out of the air for fun.

24-12 at the break which I didn’t think was too bad considering. I thought if we could hold out their tries we were definitely a chance to come back and win. Unfortunately, the Dogs scored first after the break. We hit back with two great tries to Taaffe and we were looking to storm home but a try to young Dogs winger Wilson again deflated the home crowd.

Me & Craig still managed to smile despite the loss.

Tyrone & Tallis

The Souths crowd were starting to leave which was probably a little premature given our habit of never giving up. A second 4 pointer to Tyrone gave us a bit of hope and then a brilliant try to Tallis Duncan which he started and finished whipped the home crowd into a frenzy. The arrogant Canterbury fans who were carrying on like they’d won the comp to the left of the Souths members suddenly went silent. Could we do it? It certainly looked possible with 2 and a half minutes still on the clock.

Souths had their chances to get the vital 4 pointer but couldn’t quite execute when it mattered and Canterbury held on for a tight win. Ilias and Hawkins are great young players but seem to lack the confidence to really take control when playing together. Still, the effort was there.

No Win

No win of course but plenty to take out of the game. Our forwards were fantastic. Havili, Junior and Tom were relentless in the middle and Mamouzelos provided a bit of class from dummy half. Tass was solid in an unfamiliar position, Taaffe kept trying and Munro continues to look super-exciting. It will be great to see what he can come up with when we have all guns blazing! Special mention to Tallis Duncan who really provided a bit of drive and leadership when it was lacking.

We have the bye to get ourselves right and then we face Brisbane at the Sunshine Coast. I’m hopeful we’ll have a lot of our top players back and we can begin our charge for the finals and beyond. Bring it on!

Rzbbitohs v Bulldogs highlights.

Titans v Dolphins

The final match of the round was yet another 2023 Queensland derby that looked like a close affair. Both sides were in similar spots on the table just outside the 8. A win or a loss either way could make a massive difference to their end of season chances. The Titans, after punting their coach, were finally showing a bit of toughness. The Dolphins had lost their last 4 after a massive start to the year.

The Dolphins struck early only for the Gold Coast to hit back with an 8 point lead at the break. Bennett’s blokes came out better in the second half to storm to the front but the Titans matched them with plenty of time left. Then a field goal each and we’re into golden point! The game was eventually decided by one of those 50/50 crucial penalties I was talking about before, the Dolphins sealing it with a penalty goal. 

Titans v Dolphins highlights.

The recap will have a break next week with our Bunnies having a bye in Round 20. However, I’ll be back firing on all cylinders just like the Rabbitohs will be against the Broncos. Let’s hope all our big guns return fully fit as we start back on the road to 22! Be sure to look out for Uncool Dad’s Bunnies TV Round 21 Recap after the conclusion of the round. Of course, before then we have Cam, Cody, Keaon and Cookie representing us on Wednesday night. For the first time in ages, I’ll have an interest in Origin! I know they’ll make us proud.

Uncool Dad’s Bunnies TV Round 19 Recap
Lucas and me at Accor Stadium last night.

Uncool Dad’s Bunnies TV Round 19 Recap.

By Greg Allan.

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