Sport Rugby League Roosters rout top-four Panthers
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Roosters rout top-four Panthers

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The Sydney Roosters have confirmed their NRL premiership credentials with a convincing 32-12 win over fellow top-four contenders Penrith at Allianz Stadium.

Following two losses, the reigning premiers led from start to finish on Saturday and rarely looked troubled.

For the Panthers, who had a short turnaround from a thrilling one-point win over Brisbane on Monday night, the emphatic defeat result will nonetheless raise doubts about their bona fides against top sides.

This season they have defeated just two sides who went into round 19 inside the top eight and have a tough run into the finals.

In front of a fervent 13,993 strong crowd, Boyd Cordner was superb for the Roosters, running for 202 metres and crashing over for two tries.

Sonny Bill Williams, who did not drink or eat during the day due to his observance of Ramadan, put in a solid 80-minute performance.

The Panthers lacked direction, missing playmakers Peter Wallace and Tyrone Peachey, while halfback Jamie Soward had a poor match, particularly with the boot.

Panthers back-rower Elijah Taylor was sin-binned in the fifth minute for a professional foul and the Roosters made good use of the one-man advantage soon after when Aidan Guerra – playing at centre in a reshuffled backline – went over.

With Roosters No.9 Jake Friend off the field with concussion in the ninth minute, stand-in hooker Mitch Aubusson proved himself a capable replacement when he burrowed over from dummy-half.

Soon after, the home side were controversially denied a Mitchell Pearce four-pointer by the video referees when he stole it from the arms of Matt Moylan on the tryline.

However they did take an 18-0 lead into halftime after Frenchman Remi Casty crashed over for his second try of the year.