It was a brutal second-half defensive effort from the Penrith Panthers which has led them to a come from behind 25-12 win over South Sydney on Friday night.
Many believed the match could be one of the best games of the season so far with South Sydney out with a point to prove after their thrashing at the hands of Penrith in Dubbo back in May.
Following the match, Panthers coach Ivan Cleary was impressed with the effort of his side but believes they still have more to give.
"The main objective tonight was to continue in an upward trajectory and we did that," he said.
"I think there's definitely improvement in us.
"We've got a couple of key players to come back in as well."
Cleary knows his side were strong in both defence and attack against another top-four side in Souths.
"A lot of was going well for Souths at the start of the game," he said.
"To be only 12-10 at half-time I thought was a pretty good effort from a character point of view.
"I think most teams lately would've been down by 30 with Souths in that kind of form."
The Rabbitohs came into the game in red-hot form and struck first with Adam Reynolds slotting a penalty goal before Dane Gagai crossed in the corner to give Souths a 6-0 lead.
Latrell Mitchell extended Souths' lead when he muscled his way over to score with Reynolds adding the extras.
Penrith soon lost fullback Dylan Edwards to a failed HIA forcing Stephen Crichton to move to fullback which proved to work for the Panthers.
Paul Momirovski found space down the right edge before kicking back in-field to find Nathan Cleary who scored under the posts before converting his try.
Again it was Momirovski who would set up the next try with his boot as Crichton leapt above several Souths defenders to scored but the conversion attempt was unsuccessful to move the score to 12-10 as half-time came.
The second-half started in an arm wrestle with both sides aiming up defensively but it was ill-discipline from the Rabbitohs which continually allowed Penrith to march up-field as Cleary kicked a pair of penalty goals.
Wellington junior Brent Naden made Souths pay even further scoring off a Matt Burton pass in a moment which would make any Group 11 fan smile to stretch the score to 18-12.
Cleary then seemingly iced the game kicking a field goal with six minutes left before Api Koroisau scored a try in the final minute which was converted giving Penrith a 25-12 win.
The win moves Penrith two points clear of Souths on the ladder and all but confirms the two sides will meet again in week one of the finals series.
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