Penrith Panthers thumped St George Illawarra Dragons 28-2 on Saturday to move level with their opponents atop the NRL ladder.
These sides started and finished the day as the leading pair and the Panthers' emphatic victory means they are now level on points gained and points difference after a dozen rounds of action.
Scoring opportunities were at a premium in the first half, the hosts enjoying an 8-0 interval lead at Panthers Stadium after James Maloney's penalty and Nathan Cleary's try from a show and go.
Gareth Widdop slotted the Dragons' only points from the tee early in the second period but it was all Panthers from there on in.
Maloney converted a simple penalty before Christian Crichton showed great strength in holding off three defenders to score in the right corner. A rampaging Viliame Kikau took the direct route to the line with 10 minutes to go, and, with the last act of the game, Reagan Campbell-Gillard crashed under the posts to leave both sides with a 9-3 win-loss record.
The Dragons and the Panthers sit two points clear of South Sydney Rabbitohs and New Zealand Warriors, after the Bunnies defeated their hosts 30-10 in Auckland.
Having fallen behind to Agnatius Paasi's early try, South Sydney romped into a 22-6 half-time lead - George Burgess crashing through four defenders for their first touchdown.
Stunning work through the hands put Robert Jennings in on the left and Greg Inglis added to the lead just prior to the half-hour, before Burgess' identical twin Tom scored a remarkably similar try to his sibling.
John Sutton and Solomone Kata traded scores at either end of the second half as the Rabbitohs won comfortably.
In Saturday's early game, Sydney Roosters scored 28 unanswered points after the interval to fight back and defeat Gold Coast Titans 34-14.
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