A home game for the Bulldogs in New Zealand? Against the Warriors? Sure, why not.
The Bulldogs will be searching for their first win of the 2017 campaign without two of their back three as Will Hopoate and Kerrod Holland face at least a month on the sideline with injuries.
The Dogs have shown glimpses of their best form in the opening two rounds but haven’t been able to put 80 minutes of solid football together, something coach Des Hasler will want to see.
Meanwhile, the Warriors will welcome back veteran Manu Vatuvei while Jacob Lilyman and Bodene Thompson will bring some much-needed experience to their frontline. The Warriors often have no trouble putting points on the board with the lethal Shaun Johnson leading their attack, however, it’s their control of possession and defence that can be a worry at times for Stephen Kearney’s men. The Warriors have also lost star fullback Roger Tuivasa-Sheck for the match but Tui Lolohea is an able replacement.
The Bulldogs have shown us their defence in round one and offence in round two. Will this be the week they can piece the two together? Maybe, but with the potent Warriors’ frontline and Shaun Johnson controlling things for the ‘away’ side, it’s hard to see the Bulldogs coming away with the points.
Warriors by 6
Canterbury Bulldogs 24 (Moses Mbye, Brett Morris x2, Marcelo Montoya tries; Mbye 4 goals) lead New Zealand Warriors 12 (Bodene Thompson, Shaun Johnson try; Johnson 2 goals) at Forsyth Barr Stadium. Half-time: 10-6.