The Sydney Roosters have beaten the Melbourne Storm 21-6 in a dominant performance at ANZ Stadium to win the 2018 NRL Premiership.
It’s the Roosters’ 14th premiership and their first since 2013 after denying Melbourne the chance to claim back-to-back titles.
The Roosters were given a massive boost before the game with Cooper Cronk given the green light to play despite dealing with a shoulder injury all week.
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The Roosters opened their account in the 3rd minute with Latrell Mitchell slotting over a penalty goal to give them an early 2-0 lead.
They extended that to 6-0 just minutes later with Daniel Tupou crossing for the first try of the evening after a superb pass from Luke Keary.
The Roosters continued their strong start with Latrell Mitchell shrugging off his nemesis Will Chambers to cross for their second try of the night in the 15th minute before converting his own try to give his side a 12-0 lead.
The Storm suffered another blow with five-eighth Cameron Munster sin binned in the 30th minute for a professional foul, with Mitchell slotting over a penalty goal to give the Roosters a 14-0 lead.
The Roosters took full advantage of Munster’s absence with Joseph Manu crossing in the 37th minute to extend the lead to 18-0 lead going into the break.
The Roosters continued their dominance straight after half-time and came close to putting the game beyond Melbourne’s reach in the 45th minute when Blake Ferguson crossed the line, only to put his foot on the touch line.
— Wide World of Sports (@wwos) September 30, 2018
The Storm were denied a try in the 55th minute after Nelson Asofa-Solomona was ruled to have obstructed Cooper Cronk.
Cameron Munster bombed a certain try just minutes later when he failed to pass the ball despite the Storm having a three-on-one overlap.
Josh Ado-Carr finally got the Storm on the board in the 63rd minute after intercepting a Luke Keary pass and racing 80 metres to score before Cameron Smith converted to make the score 18-6.
The Roosters made the task for the Storm even more difficult when Keary slotted over a field goal in the 69th minute to extend his side’s lead to 19-6.
The icing was put on the cake in the 78th minute when Munster was penalised for kicking Manu in the head which saw him sin binned for the second time in the match.
Mitchell converted the penalty attempt to give the Roosters a 21-6 win.
— NRL (@NRL) September 30, 2018
Roosters co-captain Boyd Cordner says it’s an unbelievable feeling
“We started so good that first half, I don’t think we’ve played a better half of footy,” Cordner told Nine.
“We just hung in there in the second half, they had a bit of a run there, we expected them to, but how good’s this?”
— NRL (@NRL) September 30, 2018
Roosters five-eighth Luke Keary was awarded the Clive Churchill Medal for man of the match.
The Storm’s loss was a disappointing end to the career of champion fullback Billy Slater who was playing his final ever NRL game.
“It’s not how we planned it but that’s footy. They were better than us in the first half and got out to a big lead,” Slater told Nine.
“I’m really grateful for the career I’ve had, the friends I’ve made and everything rugby league has done for me.”