The Roosters claimed their first win of the NRLW season as their attack clicked into gear with a 28-12 win against a Knights side whose finals hopes now hang by a thread.
The Roosters raced out to a 10-0 lead with tries to Brydie Parker and Isabelle Kelly in the 9th and 13th minutes.
The Knights responded through skipper Romy Teitzel in the 24th to make it a four-point ball-game at half-time.
Knights prop Ngatokotoru Arakua was sin-binned late in the first half for successive dangerous tackles with the Roosters cashing in early in the second through Parker's second.
Olivia Kernick's charge down and regather off a dream bounce stretched the Roosters' lead while Arakua was still off.
Annetta Nu'uausala kept the Knights in it with a powerful barge-over next to the posts to make it 18-12 with 17 minutes to play but a Knights error inside their own 10 handed the Roosters a golden chance to seal the result with Keilee Joseph carving through for her maiden NRLW try. Jess Sergis iced the win with a try three minutes from full time.
Match: Roosters v Knights
Round 3 -
Venue: Sydney Cricket Ground, Sydney
The two winless sides each brought plenty of desperation but it was the Roosters that matched that with execution with their attack finally clicking while the Knights came up with untimely errors to leave their finals hopes in 'mathematical' territory.
- Roosters playmaker Raecene McGregor looked much sharper after appearing short on match fitness in the opening fortnight; her excellent pass selection created the space that led to both the Roosters' opening two tries.
- Knights captain Romy Teitzel continues to provide plenty of inspiration for her teammates, hitting it up one-off the ruck at the Roosters line to get her side on the board after falling behind 10-0.
- Brydie Parker looked more comfortable back on the wing for the Roosters, scoring the team's first and third tries thanks to good passes from centre Isabelle Kelly and providing a deft final pass for Kelly to score the second as the duo combined well on the Roosters' left edge.
Parker gets her second
- The Roosters' other star centre Jess Sergis went down with an apparently ankle injury late in the first half but was able to stay on after having it strapped and scored the final try of the match.
- Knights prop Ngatokotoru Arakua was placed on report twice in the space of a minute for high contact followed by a lifting tackle, the second of which landed her in the sin-bin for 10 minutes.
- Roosters forward Sarah Togatuki was taken off five minutes into the second half due to a head clash and did not return.
Play of the Game
With the Roosters in control at 14-6 but not yet safe, back-rower Olivia Kernick pulled off an absolute textbook charge down. Getting up in the face of Knights half Kirra Dibb, she deflected the attempted kick back behind the Knights' line and raced through to get the dream bounce popping back up into her arms to dive over the line for a commanding 18-6 lead.
Olivia Kernick continues her try scoring run
What they said
"I'm not going to have these girls play one-out footy just so we can get our completion rate up. We are going to play footy but there's certain unforced errors we need to address. I still want them to move the ball around and play what's in front of them." - Roosters coach John Strange addresses his side's poor first-half completion rate.
"Even after those two tries I knew once we got some possession and some footy we could throw some attack at them and we did that, we came up with another try ... it's all could've would've should've, if the bounce of the ball goes our way and the call goes our way it's a different story but that's footy." - Knights coach Casey Bromilow.
The Roosters head up the M1 next Sunday for the first leg of Sunday's double header to take on an Eels side that has struggled a bit to score points so far. Buoyed by their first win of the season, they'll be out to make it two straight and put themselves firmly in finals contention.
The Knights feature in the second leg of that double header at McDonald Jones Stadium for their second home game of the season. It won't be easy against the impressive Dragons but they need to find a win to be any chance of keeping their season alive.