NRL 2 years ago

Dragons revive season by thrashing Knights

  • Dragons revive season by thrashing Knights

Winning can be a habit and St George Illawarra have declared themselves back in the groove after notching a drought-breaking 46-24 NRL win over Newcastle at Jubilee Oval.

The Dragons snapped a seven-game losing streak as they spoilt the party in club legend Danny Buderus' first game in charge as interim Knights coach.

Gareth Widdop led the Dragons' second-half fightback, setting up two four-pointers, as well as scoring one himself and kicking nine from nine.

However even he was out-shone by his halves partner Benji Marshall who finished with three try assists and touched the ball three times in one of the tries of the year.

The Dragons jumped into seventh spot to revive their campaign after they had struggled over the last two months.

Not only did they get their season back on track with five regular rounds remaining, they crossed for more than three tries for the first time in seven weeks.

Coach Paul McGregor declared "ding dong the witch is dead" in reference to their losing streak but warned their best football was still in front of them.

"I think we can still play better than that. There's no doubting that," McGregor said.

"The good thing was when we had four we turned it into six and Gareth's goal-kicking really shapes us and we're a team that likes to play from in front.

"We managed to do that early and score a couple of tries and then we got behind and the pleasing thing with that was we were able to come back."

The Dragons are not without their worries - winger Jason Nightingale will have scans on his right ankle and was on crutches and in a moonboot after the game. While fullback Josh Dugan will be assessed after copping a knock to the ribs.

After the Dragons shot out to a 12-0 lead after 13 minutes, the Knights stormed back into the contest, piling on four tries in 18 minutes to lead 20-16 at the break.

But they were unable to capitalise on the emotion of coach Rick Stone's sacking during the week and faded as Dragons halves Marshall and Widdop grabbed the game by the scruff of the neck.

Buderus declared he had plenty to work with after he handed debuts to Nathan Ross and Lachlan Fitzgibbon and had to contend with losing workhorse prop Kade Snowden to concussion in the first half.

Leeson Ah Mau was put on report for the high tackle on Snowden, who will be monitored next week.

"Some boys are over losing," Buderus said.

"More to the point, they're over letting in a lot of tries.

"It's a confidence thing. But also having personnel to be able to stop these good teams."

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