Dragons dealt NRL finals blow

St George Illawarra have had their NRL finals fate taken out of their hands after Brisbane beat them 24-12 at Suncorp Stadium on Friday night.

The injury hit Dragons must win their final two regular season games then hope other results fall their way to remain in the top eight mix after their 10th straight loss at the Brisbane venue.

St George Illawarra have not won at Suncorp Stadium since 2009.

Two-try hero Alex Glenn and livewire pivot Anthony Milford helped spark top two outfit Brisbane’s third straight win in front of 31,832 fans.

But Dragons coach Paul McGregor said his side still dared to dream after keeping Brisbane honest despite nine players nursing illness and another two lost to injury.

“We know what we need to do, we just need to go out there and do it,” McGregor said of their finals hopes.

“It is still up to us. If we finish with 30 points our for and against is good – we just have to win.”

The Dragons haven’t had much luck since flying high with six wins in their first seven games.

That trend didn’t change on Friday night when they lost winger Nene MacDonald (knee) and bench forward Hame Sele (illness) with NSW backrower Tyson Frizell (ankle) a last minute confirmation.

Added to the injury list now is Euan Aitken, who requires shoulder surgery after going down on the stroke of fulltime in a comeback match from the same injury.

Not much went right for the Dragons with Glenn opening the scoring in the fourth minute off a Josh Dugan in-goal spilt ball.

Then Dugan – who started on the wing in a reshuffled backline – dropped the ball over the line in the 11th minute after appearing to finish a sweeping movement.

The Dragons never lost their fight as they desperately tried to improve their finals hopes but could not repel the Broncos juggernaut as Milford scored one try and set up another two.

The Dragons have now lost 14 of their past 16 games against Brisbane.

“We were a bit flat tonight but I thought our defence was our feature,” Wayne Bennett said.

“If you want to be a quality football team you have to be able to defend.

“I thought Anthony (Milford) was very good tonight but (halfback) Kodi Nikorima was off the pace but that is OK.”

The Broncos led 14-6 at halftime after piling on three tries.

Glenn all but sealed the result when he nabbed his double in the 50th minute.

St George Illawarra cut the deficit to 20-12 with a Tim Lafai try in the 57th minute but Brisbane weren’t to be denied their 10th home win from 12 games this year.

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