Wilson lifts Dogs to last-gasp win over Eels

Canterbury coach Cameron Ciraldo is hailing his side’s 22-18 win over Parramatta as one of the most courageous of his tenure, as the Bulldogs’ renaissance continues to gather steam.

Diminutive winger Blake Wilson was the hero for the Dogs, snatching victory with a 74th minute winner at Accor Stadium on Monday that moved Canterbury up to seventh spot on the NRL ladder.

It took the Bulldogs all of the 2023 season to scratch their way to seven wins but already in 2024 they have matched that mark in round 14, in an indication of their improvement under Ciraldo.

Wilson’s winner came after Canterbury had lost Bailey Hayward and Josh Curran to concussion, had Kurt Mann put in the sin-bin for a crusher tackle, and lost back-rower Jacob Preston to a suspected broken ankle.

And the 45,496-strong crowd - a record for a regular season Bulldogs-Eels game - added to the belief that Canterbury are a club on the rise under Ciraldo.

Blake Wilson.
Canterbury's Blake Wilson scored in the first half, and again in the 74th minute to snatch the win.

“We just had (club great) Terry Lamb in there who addressed the boys and said that’s one of the gutsiest wins he’d seen in a long time,” Ciraldo said.

“To have someone of that stature think of our game like that, it was really pleasing.

“It was good to see all the work we’ve been doing to play under adversity is paying off."

While Canterbury were revelling in a hard-fought win, Parramatta were left wondering how they were unable to capitalise against a depleted Dogs side.

The Eels led 12-10 at halftime but aspiring NSW State of Origin halfback Mitchell Moses was unable to guide them to victory. 

“I thought in our first half he (Moses) did some really good things,” said interim Eels coach Trent Barrett.

“Given the time he’s had off, he still did some brilliant things tonight and he'll be better again next week. 

“If NSW go down that route, they won’t regret it. He’s an excellent player and a big part of our team.”

Bulldogs players celebrate a try.
The Bulldogs were delighted with a win that showed their improvement and lifted them into the eight.

Barrett revealed post match that Queensland forward J’Maine Hopgood had been struggling with a nerve issue in his back which impacted his involvement on Monday.

Parramatta began impressively when rookie Blaize Talagi crashed in after just six minutes but Wilson and Dogs captain Stephen Crichton hit back.

Moses ran on the last tackle to set up Will Peninsi just before halftime and, aided by the halfback's two conversions, the Eels had a two-point lead at the break.

Parramatta kicked on through a Kelma Tuilagi try but their inability to put the Dogs away proved costly.

Crichton scored with 10 minutes left before Connor Tracey scampered across field and found Wilson, who ran in the winner under the posts.

"We're halfway through the season and we've got a long way to go, but we've put ourselves in a decent position," Ciraldo said.

License this article

What is AAPNews?

For the first time, Australian Associated Press is delivering news straight to the consumer.

No ads. No spin. News straight-up.

Not only do you get to enjoy high-quality news delivered straight to your desktop or device, you do so in the knowledge you are supporting media diversity in Australia.

AAP Is Australia’s only independent newswire service, free from political and commercial influence, producing fact-based public interest journalism across a range of topics including politics, courts, sport, finance and entertainment.

What is AAPNews?
The Morning Wire

Wake up to AAPNews’ morning news bulletin delivered straight to your inbox or mobile device, bringing you up to speed with all that has happened overnight at home and abroad, as well as setting you up what the day has in store.

AAPNews Morning Wire
AAPNews Breaking News
Breaking News

Be the first to know when major breaking news happens.

Notifications will be sent to your device whenever a big story breaks, ensuring you are never in the dark when the talking points happen.

Focused Content

Enjoy the best of AAP’s specialised Topics in Focus. AAP has reporters dedicated to bringing you hard news and feature content across a range of specialised topics including Environment, Agriculture, Future Economies, Arts and Refugee Issues.

AAPNews Focussed Content
Subscription Plans

Choose the plan that best fits your needs. AAPNews offers two basic subscriptions, all billed monthly.

Once you sign up, you will have seven days to test out the service before being billed.

AAPNews Full Access Plan
Full Access
  • Enjoy all that AAPNews has to offer
  • Access to breaking news notifications and bulletins
  • Includes access to all AAPNews’ specialised topics
Join Now
AAPNews Student Access Plan
Student Access
  • Gain access via a verified student email account
  • Enjoy all the benefits of the ‘Full Access’ plan at a reduced rate
  • Subscription renews each month
Join Now
AAPNews Annual Access Plan
Annual Access
  • All the benefits of the 'Full Access' subscription at a discounted rate
  • Subscription automatically renews after 12 months
Join Now

AAPNews also offers enterprise deals for businesses so you can provide an AAPNews account for your team, organisation or customers. Click here to contact AAP to sign-up your business today.

Download the app
Download AAPNews on the App StoreDownload AAPNews on the Google Play Store