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'Better than Dubbo': Upside for Bennett after streak ends

Rabbitohs coach Wayne Bennett isn't concerned about the side's discipline after an 11-2 penalty count against them led to their 10-game winning streak ending with a loss to Penrith on Friday night.

South Sydney came out of blocks firing against a Panthers outfit who started shakily but then found their groove to pile on 25 unanswered points and maintain second spot on the Telstra Premiership ladder.

The Rabbitohs' ill-discipline crept into their game as the Panthers clawed their way back from a 12-0 deficit with Cody Walker, Adam Reynolds and Keaon Koloamatangi among those penalised. 

Bennett noted the Rabbitohs were level with Newcastle in conceding the fewest penalties of any side in the competition. He labeled the Panthers match as an "off night" in that department.

"It's not something we do but it's what we did tonight," Bennett said.

Match Highlights: Panthers v Rabbitohs

"It's something we have fixed and have under control. We just had a bad night for whatever reason and have to live with that.

"We've just got to go back, there were lots of positives to take out of tonight.

"Just a lack of discipline, we gave away penalties and put ourselves under pressure. We all understand.

"It was a lot better than Dubbo, so we've come that far, we've just got a couple of little things to fix up."

A major turning point in the second half came via a penalty when Mark Nicholls was pinned for offside as part of the game's downtown rule.

Reynolds with one of the best 40/20 kicks you will see

Nicholls ran past the point of the play-the-ball before Reynolds kicked a ball that the side then forced an error, only for the Bunker to intervene and pin the veteran forward.

"It was a big moment, there's no doubt about that," Bennett said.

"We're all a bit dumbfounded by it. Mark's done it all his career and so many others have. I just don't know where it's come from. No one's got any idea in that changeroom."

The Rabbitohs are expected to meet Penrith again in week one of the finals with both sides placed in second and third respectively.

Bennett believes Friday's result won't matter then. 

"There will be no advantage out of playing them tonight [leading into the finals]," Bennett said.

"I'm sure we'll be back here in three weeks. Suncorp is a good place to play it."

Meanwhile, Bennett said Rabbitohs winger Josh Mansour had no issue with his knee after leaving the field during the second half but has a laceration above his eye.

Bennett left 'dumbfounded' by Nicholls penalty

Mansour copped a barrage of towering Nathan Cleary bombs throughout the second half which the former Panther and Latrell Mitchell struggled to defuse.

"We all know he's a wonderful kicker," Bennett said of Cleary.

"We handled it pretty good but had a couple of bad moments."

Acknowledgement of Country

National Rugby League respects and honours the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.

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