Souths hooker Damien Cook

It took a while but the Newcastle Knights have lost at home for the first time this season at the hands of the South Sydney Rabbitohs.

With the Rabbitohs leading from start to finish, the scoreline ended up 36-18 in their favour at McDonald Jones Stadium.

The Rabbitohs burst out of the blocks as tries to Robert Jennings and Cody Walker gave them the early ascendancy.

When the Knights had possession of their own, though, the points were not too far away.

It was Shaun Kenny-Dowall who started and finished the movement for the Knights first try to pull the deficit back.

It did not last long, though, as a floating pass found Campbell Graham to score in the corner for Souths.

In true Newcastle spirit this season, however, they dug deep, as Sione Mata’utia and Kenny-Dowall scored before half-time.

The Knights had the momentum and could have scored first in the second half, only for winger Ken Sio to bomb a certain try.

It went from bad to worse for Sio; he then dropped a towering bomb, leading to a try for Souths centre Dane Gagai.

The Damien Cook show was then on display as he broke the line and raced 30 metres to score to continue his scintillating form.

The Knights did pull one try back through Lachlan Fitzgibbon after good work from Kalyn Ponga.

Though the Bunnies got the final say when captain Greg Inglis powered over to score right before full-time.

It was an emotional win for Cody Walker especially, who lost his mother just two days ago.

The club, in true galvanising fashion, wore black armbands to mourn the loss.

“Obviously, it was a tough last 48 hours for Cody and his family,” Souths coach Anthony Seibold said.

“We wore the black armbands as a sign of respect for his mum, and the rest of the family.

It was a really brave effort as he did not get in until late last night, but we are really proud of him.”

With a high completion rate and fluid attack, Seibold was pleased. Though he wants to see the defence improve.

“Certainly from an attacking point of view, I thought we were very sharp, completing 94 per cent and putting a lot of pressure on the Knights,” Seibold said.

“But defensively, we need to improve – they scored four tries against us – that was disappointing.”

Knights captain Aidan Guerra did not mince his words; saying that he and others in the side need to be better next week.

“We were rolled by good opposition, but we made them look like world beaters,” Guerra said.

“There was just a lack of urgency and execution.

“There’s some players, myself among them, that have to take a hard look at our performance and endeavour to do well next week.”

Player of the Game:

3. Damien Cook

2. Lachlan Fitzgibbon

  1. Alex Johnston

By ricky

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