Nigel Wall,, NRL.com
The Bulldogs wrapped up the 2013 Minor Premiership with a crushing 42-10 defeat of the Sydney Roosters at ANZ Stadium in Round 26 last season.
The tries flowed from both teams like a burst water main as the rivals posted 28 points in the first half hour – with the Bulldogs most impressive from kick-off, racing to a 12-nil lead in as many minutes through tries to Josh Morris and Josh Jackson.
However, the Roosters rallied, with tries to Aidan Guerra and Anthony Minichiello clawing them back to a two-point deficit before Frank Pritchard crashed over in the 33rd minute to catapult the Dogs to an 18-10 lead they would take to oranges.
The second half was all blue and white however, with Canterbury racing in four unanswered tries – including two more to rookie back-rower Jackson for a memorable hat-trick.
The Bulldogs’ second 40 minutes featured two stunning tries in particular: Kris Keating dotting down after some wonderful offloads and runs from forwards Sam Kasiano, James Graham and Pritchard; then Barba touching down millimetres inside the deadball line following through a clever inside chip kick from five-eighth Josh Reynolds.
The Bulldogs dominated possession 56 per cent to 44 per cent; not surprisingly they were able to run their opponents ragged, enjoying a 434-metre territorial advantage and forcing the Tricolours to make 54 more tackles overall.
Canterbury missed just 21 tackles all match, while the Roosters missed 46; Canterbury’s six errors were half as many as the visiting team’s tally.
Barba was close to the Bulldogs’ best on ground, scoring a try, setting up three others and contributing a game-high 12 tackle-breaks, while Josh Jackson (eight tackle busts, two line-breaks) will long remember his three tries. Frank Pritchard made two line-breaks.
For the Roosters, prop Jared Waerea-Hargreaves tried hard (137 metres), as did halfback Mitchell Pearce (three offloads).