Inspirational Canterbury five-eighth Josh Reynolds has described Friday night's 20-12 victory over NRL rivals Manly as the toughest game of his young career.

The win came at a huge cost, with prop Sam Kasiano facing a stint on the sidelines after suffering a high cheekbone injury, while halfback Kris Keating hurt his hamstring.

They were both off the field after 20 minutes, leaving the Bulldogs to navigate 60 minutes against the defending premiers with just two men on the bench, and with Reynolds as their only half.

That thought ran through the 23-year-old's foggy head when he groggily stood up after making a try-saving tackle on a rampaging Tony Williams early in the second half.

"100 per cent, if I went down, they wouldn't have had any halves out there," Reynolds said after the match.

"It was just one of those games. There were plenty like me who were hurting.

"There were front-rowers out there having hit-ups out of our half getting absolutely bashed.

"That was just a massive effort."

Both sides left the field physically drained in a bruising encounter as Reynolds, in just his second NRL season, stood tall.

"It's definitely the toughest game I've ever played," Reynolds said.

"That second half, we just seemed to be in our own half the whole time, defending our backsides off.

"But I think that's what kind of team we are, you know? We just hang in there for each other and someone will come up with a little play and we'll just go off the back of that."

NZ Newswire

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