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Latrell crushes Warriors to move Suds into top four

Latrell Mitchell inspired a smash up in South Sydney of the New Zealand Warriors, picking up two points and a vital for/against swing in the process.

The score of 48-10 seems huge and still does not do justice to the gap between the two teams. It was the most one-sided game of the year so far. Even the Warriors’ record loss to Melbourne at the Anzac weekend was closer than that.

Mitchell was imperious: two tries and two assists, plus a perfect eight of eight with the boot before being given an early mark an hour behind.

The victory jumps the Rabbits above the Roosters and puts them on 12 wins, nominally securing their presence in the top eight. The 28-point margin also adds a buffer to both the Broncos, who they move into sixth, and next week’s opponents, Parramatta, into fifth. Win next week and the top four is within reach.

It would be easy to say the Warriors threw in the towel, but in truth, their defense for Lachlan Ilias’ third-minute opener set the tone. Too often, simple effort zones and the intensity of turns have failed them. The Kiwis can’t wait for this season to end.

This trial by Ilias was a bad omen. The halfback was presented with a clear run to the ten-yard line as the Warriors appeared to ignore the man in possession waiting for an in-form move.

They did the same in the ninth minute, allowing Cameron Murray to waltz straight down the middle and find Damien Cook for another.

Murray then put one on a plate for Junior Tatola. before Ilias did the same for Keaon Koloamatangi. The score was over the clock.

The Kiwis posted one of their own through Marcelo Montoya, but within two minutes Souths had it picked up by Mitchell.

His first summed up the Warriors as much as the Souths: Addin Fonua-Blake allowed Jai Arrow to offload on his fullback, who was beaten by despondent tackles from Tohu Harris and Bunty Afoa for an all too easy try.

Latrell then hit two pieces of magic either side of the break, tapping smartly for Alex Johnston’s mandatory try, before providing an excellent long pass that carried Isaac Thompson over the line on his debut in the NRL at the age of 25.

Shaun Johnson got another one for the Warriors before Mitchell got his final arc, wandering through a non-existent defense. He left and Souths put the tail in the rack.

Sports Grp2

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