South Sydney, Wests Tigers, Sydney Roosters, Parramatta and Cronulla will be the only undefeated teams to start day two of the 2015 Dick Smith NRL Auckland Nines after an unpredictable first day at Eden Park.
The Rabbitohs showed they will be serious Nines title threats, following on from their NRL Telstra Premiership triumph last October, with victories over Penrith and defending Nines champions North Queensland.
Highlights v Panthers
The Cowboys were strong in their first-up victory over Melbourne, but faltered against the Rabbitohs on a typically colourful Nines day in Auckland. However they can be heartened that they began day two with one victory and one defeat in 2014 before claiming the inaugural Nines trophy.
The Eels opened the tournament with a 22-17 win over Manly and then defeated Newcastle to give Brad Arthur’s side a successful first day.
Wests Tigers gave coach Jason Taylor a strong start to his first year at the club with victories over Canberra and Gold Coast. Meanwhile the Sharks and the Roosters will both head into day two confident of success in the nine-a-side format with two victories each.
The Raiders scored the upset of day one with a victory over the Warriors, who up until the final moments of their match looked worthy title favourites.
The crowd of 43,054 was treated to a day of entertainment involving a host of NRL stars including Shaun Johnson, Mitchell Pearce, Adam Reynolds, Daly Cherry-Evans, Kieran Foran, Benji Marshall and Josh Dugan, as well as the introduction of the Shot Clock innovation.
And the NZ Kiwi Ferns went one-up in their three-match Nines series with an 8-4 victory over the Australian Jillaroos in the first Nines match between the two women’s teams, watched by a live television audience in both New Zealand via Sky Sport and Australia via FOX SPORTS.
Day One Results
Eels 22 d Sea Eagles 17
Knights 18 d Dragons 7
Cowboys 17 d Storm 8
Rabbitohs 11 d Panthers 4
Wests Tigers 16 d Raiders 10
Warriors 17 d Titans 10
Roosters 6 d Broncos 4
Sharks 17 d Bulldogs 4
Kiwi Ferns 8 d Australian Jillaroos 4
Eels 21 d Knights 15
Dragons 25 d Sea Eagles 21
Storm 20 d Panthers 4
Rabbitohs 19 d Cowboys 12
Tigers 26 d Titans 0
Raiders 23 d Warriors 19
Roosters 10 d Bulldogs 6
Sharks 31 d Broncos 4