The Newcastle Knights NSW Cup side defeated the Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs 44-12 at Belmore Sports Ground on Saturday affternoon.
The Knights led 24-0 after 35 minutes before the Bulldogs scored two late tries to go into the half time break with a 24-12 scoreline.
The men in red and blue continued their control in the second half with a further four tries, while they kept the Bulldogs scoreless to record a strong win away from home.
The only negative was a left ankle injury to replacement Ben Tupou, who limped off late in the first half and didn’t return for the rest of the match, and starting hooker Travis Waddell, who left the field in the second half with a knee injury.
Both will require scans this week.
The Knights opened the scoring after just three minutes via winger Josh Mantellato.
The Italian World Cup representative dived over in the corner following a great flick pass from centre Pat Mata’utia.
Mantellato failed to convert from the sideline, but it was the Knights with an early 4-0 advantage.
Pat Mata’utia then went from provider to beneficiary with a brilliant leap to score from a pinpoint Michael Dobson kick.
Mantellato added the extras for the men in red and blue to jump out to a 10-0 lead after as many minutes.
The Knights were in complete control and crossed again in the next set following a high cut-out ball from Travis Waddell for Chanel Mata’utia to score.
Newcastle then added a further two tries to their tally via Jeremy Siulepa and James Elias to lead 24-0 after just 22 minutes.
Canterbury responded with two late tries, but it was the Knights leading 24-12 at the break.
The Knights had the perfect start to the second half when veteran lock Matt Hilder barged over to finish off a great team try.
Mantellato missed the conversion, but it was the away side that were charging with a comfortable 28-12 advantage.
Centre Brayden Wiliame extended the Knights’ lead after 65 minutes following a quality kick from Dobson.
Mantellato missed the kick, but it was Newcastle out in front 32-12 with just eight minutes left in the match.
Fullback Nathan Ross then put on an attacking show with a slicing run from halfway to score under the posts.
Mantellato added the extras for a 38-12 lead with just minutes remaining.
The Knights’ dominant win was capped off in the dying stages when Pat Mata’utia scored off a great pass from Hilder.
Mantellato converted to make the final score 44-12 in favour of the men in red and blue.
NSW Cup Summary
Knights 44 (T: P Mata’utia 2, Mantellato, C Mata’utia, Siulepa, Elias, Hilder, Wiliame, Ross, G: Mantellato 4/9)
Bulldogs 12 (T: Minute, Perrett, G: Templeman 2/2)
Meanwhile in SG Ball, the Knights were defeated 36-28 by Penrith.