What a Dog’s breakfast: Canterbury officially the worst team in 93 years
Talk about a dog’s breakfast.
South Sydney belted Canterbury 38-0 in their Good Friday clash at Homebush to surge to the top of the table alongside Penrith and condemn the Bulldogs to their fourth defeat in a row to start the season.
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Not only are Trent Barrett’s troops winless after the opening month of the competition, but they haven’t even scored a single point in their last three outings.
The last time the boys from Belmore scored a try was on March 12 in a 32-16 loss to Newcastle. Since then they’ve lost 28-0 to the Panthers, 24-0 to the Broncos and now let in 38 points against the Rabbitohs
No wonder they’re desperately pleading with Penrith to let under-utilised playmaker Matt Burton come over early, after he signed a deal to join the Bulldogs in 2022.
Their absolute shellacking saw the Dogs become just the second team in NRL history to go three straight games without registering a point, joining the Sharks side from 2014.
You have to go back all the way to 1928 — that’s 93 years ago — to find a team (Glebe) that has scored fewer than 16 points across the first four rounds of a season.
Souths were never under pressure.Source:Getty Images
Bulldogs fans have endured a rough few years but would have been hoping for a positive change after Barrett took over in 2021, following the sacking of Dean Pay midway through last season.
Barrett said he learnt from his previous mistakes while coaching Manly, and earnt rave reviews for moulding Penrith’s attack as the Panthers went all the way to last year’s grand final.
But his influence hasn’t been able to transform the team’s on-field fortunes.
They were dealt an early blow when five-eighth Lachlan Lewis was rubbed out of the game after less than 10 minutes with concussion. Captain Josh Jackson’s absence didn’t help either.
The Dogs started with plenty of guts but never looked like troubling a Bunnies outfit that cruised along in third gear as the afternoon wore on.
Least pts scored after first 4 games
1920 – Annandale (5 pts)
1917 – Norths (9)
1928 – Glebe (12)
1915 – Wests (13)
1917 – Annandale (13)
1913 – Annandale (14)
1908 – Cumberland (15)
1916 – Annandale (15)
1925 – Newtown (15)
2021 – Canterbury (16)
Dog’s breakfast is ‘just disastrous’
Mal Meninga told Fox League the Rabbitohs just “coasted” to victory and Michael Ennis said while his former team tried hard, its abysmal attack was impossible to ignore.
“Plenty of passion from the Bulldogs. It was a terrific start from them,” Ennis said. “Physically they were up for the challenge and that’s what’s heartbreaking to see from Canterbury.
“They’re trying so hard, they really are but they just haven’t got the class to go with a side like South Sydney.
“That class just pulled them apart with ease without a lot of resistance from the Bulldogs. Their attack is just disastrous.”
Panthers legend Greg Alexander added: “They just haven’t got the players, they haven’t got the class, they’re just not up to it.
“The Dogs were very disappointing.”
Barrett addresses attack in press conference
Barrett said in his post-match press conference the Bulldogs’ attack is “pedestrian”, but added his troops didn’t help themselves with a litany of errors and may have been able to cross the stripe had they not bungled so many opportunities.
The coach told reporters he know what’s wrong with their attack and admitted it’s “not an easy fix”, but said a press conference wasn’t the right forum to go into detail about it.
“I’m not going to discuss it here,” he said.
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