James Segeyaro burrowed his way over the line to open the scoring for the evening and to lead 6-0 with Jamie Soward’s conversion.
Canterbury were denied three times by the video referee with the visitors leading 6-0 at half time.
In the 45th minute Segeyaro had bagged a double when a Soward grubber at short range ricocheted off a number of Bulldogs defenders and Segeyaro picked up the ball at speed and behind him, hitting a gap on the line.
It soon became 16-0 when a Soward pass found an unmarked Josh Mansour on the left wing and had a clear run for the line.
Soward soon after had another try assist, this time popping a sweetly timed short pass for Matt Moylan who had spotted a small gap in the defensive line and crossed over untouched, with the Panthers leading 22-0.
Three quickfire, but consolation tries to the Bulldogs was not enough to bridge the deficit completely, with the Panthers running out 6 point victors.
The Panthers opened the scoring in the eleventh minute when a backline movement containing a number of “tip ons” on the right flank finished with Dallin Watene-Zelezniak who dived in the corner. Jamie Soward’s conversion made it 6-0.
The lead was doubled in the 22nd minute when a Soward cut out pass hit debutant George Jennings on his chest, and dived in the left corner to cross for his first try in the NRL.
A penalty conversion further extended it by 2 with the home team leading 14-0 at half time.
Within the first two minutes after the restart the lead was further extended when a Bryce Cartwright offload was taken by James Segeyaro, found a gap and chucked a dummy pass to sprint his way to the corner.
In the 51st minute a Soward cross field kick found Watene-Zelezniak on the full, and after shrugging off one cover defender was able to plant the ball across the despite another defender grabbing him by the legs.
Leading 24-0, the Bulldogs scored three tries in a 10 minute period to reduce to a 6 point match inside the last five minutes. With less than a minute remaining, the visitors had an opportunity to possibly force it to golden point but was snuffed out by the scrambling defence, with Penrith holding on for victory.
South coast junior who made his NRL debut for St. George Illawarra in the opening round of the 2007 season, however by mid-season had been released by the Dragons and signed by the Panthers.
He made his NRL debut for the Panthers in Round 17 against the Wests Tigers as the starting fullback. He would make three more appearances, two of them as the starting five-eighth up until Round 20, including scoring a try against his former team. He would be dropped to the Premier League after the Round 20 loss to the Raiders.
He would be part of the NRL squad in 2008 but could not crack it into the first-grade team and in May was released by Penrith for undisclosed reasons.
He joined the Burleigh Bears in the Queensland Cup in 2009, and later switched to rugby union, playing in the Sydney club competition and representing Australia in the Sevens.
Brisbane junior who was playing for Redcliffe in the Queensland Cup when he was recruited by the Panthers, joining the club in 2006.
After a series of strong performances in 2007 at fullback in the Premier League, coupled with the unavailability of first choice fullback Rhys Wesser to injury, he made his NRL debut against the Broncos at CUA Stadium.
Despite a solid showing at the back, he was dropped back to the Premier League the next week and there he played out the season.
In 2008 he returned back to Redcliffe and after a number of strong seasons he was selected as part of the Broncos NRL squad in 2013 however a return to the NRL after six seasons would elude him. He left Redcliffe at the end of 2014 as the all time leading point scorer for the Dolphins and is currently playing for the Boston 13s in the USARL.
Temora junior who played lower grades at Cronulla before joining St. George Illawarra in 2003, making his NRL debut that season, and later joined the Sydney Roosters and North Queensland, where he was part of their 2005 grand final squad.
After gaining a release from the Cowboys at the end of 2006, he was put on a ‘trial and train’ deal with the Panthers in the 2006/07 off-season and later earned a contract in their NRL squad.
Primarily a halfback who could also play at five-eighth, he started the season in the Premier League and whilst his season was disrupted with injury, he made his return to the NRL midway through the season, starting at five-eighth alongside captain Craig Gower in the halves in their loss to Brisbane at CUA Stadium. He made one more appearance, the following week against the Tigers at Telstra Stadium before being dropped back to the Premier League for the remainder of the season.
He would later be released, playing out his career outside of Sydney with teams such as the Helensburgh Tigers in the Wollongong competition and the Scone Thoroughbreds in Group 21.
Auckland born St. Mary’s junior who was part of the victorious 2006 Jersey Flegg grand final side.
In 2007, he was elevated to the Premier League squad and after some strong performances made his NRL debut against the Wests Tigers at CUA Stadium. Coming off the bench, he scored a second half try as the Panthers fell just short of a potential come from behind win. The following week he made his run on debut, starting on the wing in the upset victory over Manly. In total, he made 10 appearances in 2007, crossing for 7 tries.
Whilst being part of the NRL squad in both 2008 and 2009, his appearances were limited to 10 across both seasons as either a starting centre or winger, however returned a decent strike rate of 5 tries from his 6 appearances in 2009.
In 2010, he joined the Wests Tigers, making 15 appearances across two seasons before returning in 2012 as one of a host of experienced player signings.
In his second stint at the Panthers, he was once again a squad player, making 10 appearances across both 2012 and 2013. He started at centre in the first two matches of the 2013 season but would ultimately be his final matches in the NRL. In 2012 he made his international debut for his native Cook Islands.
He once again departed at the end of 2013, playing for the Illawarra Cutters in the NSW Cup, and would remain playing in the lower tiers, captaining St. Mary’s in the Ron Massey Cup in 2019.
North coast junior who made his NRL debut for Newcastle in 2005. After not being able to crack into the Knights NRL team in 2006 he sought greater opportunities by signing with the Panthers.
The front row forward made his club debut for Penrith in the opening round of the 2007 premiership season, coming off the bench in the loss to Cronulla at Toyota Stadium. His second appearance in Round 8 was his first run on appearance, and in total made 7 appearances in 2007, and crossing for a try in their win over the Cowboys at Dairy Farmers Stadium.
Primarily viewed as a ‘squad’ player, his appearances in 2008 were once again limited as he once again spent the majority of the season in the NSW Cup for the Windsor Wolves, making 8 appearances, mostly off the bench.
He was released at the end of the 2008 season due to salary cap restraints, playing for three seasons in France before returning to Australia and playing out his career in the Newcastle competition.
Auckland born Cambridge Park junior who was a Junior Kangaroo and made his way up the grades at the Panthers, being a regular member of the St. Mary’s-Penrith Cougars Premier League team in 2006.
In the opening round of the 2007 season, he made his NRL debut for the Panthers, coming off the bench in the 18-0 loss to the Sharks. He would make his run on debut in Round 6 against Melbourne at Olympic Park, starting in the second row. In total he would make 15 appearances in his first season, primarily off the bench and had a small number of starting appearances, including one in the centres. He scored his maiden try versus the Sydney Roosters in Round 14.
He would start 2008 in the Premier League but would fight his way back into the NRL squad by the middle of the season, playing a total of 9 matches, with 8 of them off the bench.
A broken ankle injury sustained in the trials saw him miss a big part of the 2009 season and whilst he returned to the field, it was for the Windsor Wolves in the NSW Cup and could not make it back into the NRL team. He later signed with the Wests Tigers for the 2010 season.
After three season, he went to Melbourne in 2013 and would then head to England in 2015, joining the Castleford Tigers in the English Super League, where he is still playing this year and to date has clocked over 100 appearances.
The Panthers opened the scoring in the third minute when Jamal Idris batted back a Jamie Soward cross field bomb, with Elijah Taylor picking up the scraps and barging over.
It was soon 12-0 when Matt Moylan sliced through the defensive line with Soward adding the extras.
The Broncos however would score the next three tries to lead 18-12 before the home team locked it up in the shadows of half time courtesy of a Soward line break and flicking it back inside to winger Kevin Naiqama to finish a 60 metre counter attacking raid.
Penrith regained the lead six minutes after the resumption when James Segeyaro caught a mid field bomb and passed it Bryce Cartwright who then basketball passed it to Dean Whare to cross in the corner.
Kevin Naiqama bagged a double when he was on the end of a sweeping backline movement to make it 30-18 and Lewis Brown crashed over in the 59th minute to make it 34-18.
But once again, the visitors would hit back with three quick tries to lock it up at 34-all with less than three minutes remaining.
A 25 metre field goal from Matt Moylan with 50 seconds remaining edged the Panthers ahead by the barest of margins and was enough to register a high scoring victory.
Penrith Panthers – from chocolate soldiers to black magic