Wests Tigers v Panthers preview

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willow
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Wests Tigers v Panthers preview

Unread post by willow » Wed 02 Jul, 2014 12:22 pm

Wests Tigers v Panthers
Leichhardt Oval
Sunday, 3pm (AEST)


If you make the wise decision to walk into the romantic and historic confines of Leichhardt Oval this Sunday afternoon, chances are you'll be treated to one hell of a game of rugby league.

While our tastebuds prepare for the final feast that is Origin III on Wednesday week, the entree will be played between two of the League's purring cats in the Panthers and the Tigers.

Both are 2014 surprise packets that have engineered their way into the top eight; both have captured the stubborn hearts and minds of western Sydney with refreshing roster makeovers and styles of play; and both are driven by an overdue push into September football that is realistically well in their grasp.

All this, played in the backdrop of that old Leichhardt hill, makes this clash arguably the game of the round.

Panthers coach Ivan Cleary, whose side had their five-game winning streak snapped by the Warriors in a 30-20 defeat in New Zealand last week, has been forced into one change, re-calling wingman Kevin Naiqama in place of NSW Resident Isaah Yeo.

Things are a bit more complicated for Tigers coach Mick Potter, who has retained ring-in fullback Blake Austin in the No. 1 after he performed admirably for the injured James Tedesco in their 19-18 thriller over the Raiders last Saturday.

Veteran three-quarter Keith Lulia comes in for Tim Simona (mouth injury), back-up Joel Luani replaces Origin rake Robbie Farah, while forwards Dene Halatau, Sitaleki Akauola and Jack Buchanan are fresh faces on a new-look bench.

Watch Out Tigers: Panthers bench prop Jeremy Latimore has quietly worked his way into becoming one of the most significant cogs in Cleary's engine room. The only player in the forward pack to have played every game this season, Latimore leads the team in hit-up metres with 1178m, including a team-high and season-high 143 against the Warriors last week. He's arguably Penrith's most consistent performer this year.

Watch Out Panthers: Penrith are going from the lowest utilisers of dummy-half running in the Warriors to the biggest exponents in the Tigers. The joint-venture club averages a league-high 22.5 runs from the play-the-ball, over double the 10.7 from the Warriors. Problem is their most dangerous weapon around that ruck, Robbie Farah (109 dummy-half runs), is away on Origin duty, although they still have David Nofoaluma (39), Pat Richards (26) and Blake Austin (26) to help out.

Plays To Watch: Twice against the Raiders the Tigers employed a cross-field kick that ended in tries to wingmen Nofoaluma and Richards. Rookie halfback Luke Brooks has shown that he can put the ball on a dime – he's kicking game against Jamie Soward will be a joy to watch.

Meanwhile, Penrith's sweeping movements involving two lead runners and fullback Matt Moylan out the back was used early and often against the Warriors. And while it didn't exactly come up trumps, they barely budged from the game plan.

Where It Will Be Won: The Tigers concede a league-leading 8.3 penalties per game, while the Panthers force a league-leading 10-3 errors from their opponents. If the home side can turn both those in their favour, then they'll have a decent chance of winning the game. The kicking games of both Brooks and Soward will be key.

What Are The Odds: There's slightly more money taken on the Tigers ($2.95) at Sportsbet.com.au –they are a big price considering they're playing at Leichhardt Oval. Panthers are currently $1.38. Surprisingly, Tigers 13+ is the favoured margin.

The History: Played 26; Wests Tigers 11, Penrith 14, drawn 1. The Tigers are on a remarkable seven-game winning streak against their feline opponents, dating all the way back to August 2010. But check out this scary fact: in six of the seven losses, the Panthers have been held to a rather haunting 18 points each time. The one remaining loss? It was a shut-out. (Note: the last game played between these two at Leichhardt Oval was in 2009, when the Panthers won 26-10, the fourth of five straight victories over the Tigers.)

Match Officials: Referees – Shayne Hayne & Alan Shortall; Sideline Officials – Russell Turner & Adam Gee; Video Referees – Jared Maxwell & Luke Phillips.

Televised: Channel Nine – Delayed, 3pm (AEST).

The Way We See It: One team loses its best two players to Origin, while the other is just about at full strength. So on paper alone, the Panthers are four-point favourites.


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Unread post by everett » Wed 02 Jul, 2014 12:57 pm

My prediction is Penrith 13 plus.

Reasons as follows;

No Farah and Woods.

Injuries to Simona and Teddy.

Austin playing out of position.

Crap centre combination.

Light bench.

Last week would have taken a lot of petrol off the tank

Penrith at full strength and second on the table.

State of Origin really wrecks club games. Something has to change
Living the dream and praying for another premiership

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Unread post by tig_prmz » Wed 02 Jul, 2014 1:23 pm

A lot of money going into tigers 13+? That's wierd.

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My Round 1 Team 2018

1. lolo 2. noffa 3. suli 4. milne 5. fonua
6. reynolds 7. brooks
8. packer 9. ET 10. Twal
11. McQuen 12. Lawrence 13. Eiso
14. Matulino 15. McIllwrick 16. Sue 17. Aloiai
18. Marsters 19. Benji 20. Grant 21. K Naiqama
Next: Liddle, MCK, Felise, MWZ, Thompson, Rochow, Gamble

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Justo
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Unread post by Justo » Wed 02 Jul, 2014 3:17 pm

tig_prmz wrote:A lot of money going into tigers 13+? That's wierd.

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Yeah, geee, wow I cant see us winning by 13+. But I'll be very happy if we do. Ecstatic actually!! Not that I'll be putting money on that scenario.

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Unread post by diedpretty » Wed 02 Jul, 2014 4:33 pm

Justo wrote:
tig_prmz wrote:A lot of money going into tigers 13+? That's wierd.

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Yeah, geee, wow I cant see us winning by 13+. But I'll be very happy if we do. Ecstatic actually!! Not that I'll be putting money on that scenario.
I can't even see us scoring 13 points.


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Unread post by Flippedy » Wed 02 Jul, 2014 8:31 pm

Geez I can't believe this guy (and the punters) has us even in the frame of winning this game! Penrith are playing unbelievably well, they are at full strength and sit on top of the ladder. We have struggled to beat the bottom placed teams in recent weeks, have our 2 most influential players out, as well as a host of others, and sit precariously in the top 8.

I know everybody talks about Leichhardt Oval being a big factor in our favour, but the last game we played there we were soundly thumped by the Titans! So, what am I not seeing here? A Panthers form slump perhaps?
Sooner or later, next year has to be this year - Ricksen

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Unread post by Defiant » Wed 02 Jul, 2014 9:05 pm

I thought there was little hope too, until i heard Ben Ikin's sure thing of the weekend round. Panthers to pump the Tigers!

There is definitely hope.

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Unread post by nads1234 » Wed 02 Jul, 2014 9:22 pm

4 teams bellow us have the bye and most have a better for and against if we lose prob go from 6 to 10

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willow
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Unread post by willow » Wed 02 Jul, 2014 9:53 pm

diedpretty wrote:
Justo wrote:
tig_prmz wrote:A lot of money going into tigers 13+? That's wierd.

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Yeah, geee, wow I cant see us winning by 13+. But I'll be very happy if we do. Ecstatic actually!! Not that I'll be putting money on that scenario.
I can't even see us scoring 13 points.
I reckon we'll score 12 and probably lose by a similar margin.

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Unread post by happy tiger » Wed 02 Jul, 2014 10:31 pm

One thing in our favour

Shayne Hometown Hayne is our referee

Tigers 16-12

We can win this Show some faith

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Unread post by turnstyle » Wed 02 Jul, 2014 11:01 pm

also surprised at how much chance the tigers are given in this preview. weird.... feels like they have the two teams mixed up!
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Unread post by Eye Of Da Tiger » Thu 03 Jul, 2014 7:56 am

Unfortunately I don't think we have a chance this week. Love to see the boys prove us wrong but I think several key positions are far too week.

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Unread post by quintus » Thu 03 Jul, 2014 8:20 am

:sign: Go the Mighty Wests Tigers....Get into them men. :sign:

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Unread post by stevied » Fri 04 Jul, 2014 11:11 am

Not sure about the Tigers makeover comment Willow.....What because of injuries? Brooks, Tapau and Gavet might have been part of the makeover but Gavet's not there. Instead we have a rather pedestrian team with several reserve graders or veterans who won't be showcasing a makeover in style of play either. Also, we might have the highest number of dummy half runs but look who'll be attempting it this week - can't see Luani threatening too much in that area! But I agree with the spectacle provided by good ol' Leichhardt! I think we'll keep it tight for 60 minutes but the Panther's higher skill level will turn the tide in the end. 26-12 to the visitors. Hope I'm wrong!

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Unread post by Anthism » Fri 04 Jul, 2014 11:21 am

Didn't have much hope of us winning the corresponding game last year at their home ground but we pulled a rabbit out of the hat (Simona). Don't want to jinx anything though. Leichhardt factor will be good. Crowd was abnormally quiet at the Titans game.

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Unread post by MacDougall » Sat 05 Jul, 2014 5:11 pm

We will win and win well.

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Unread post by wtigers » Sat 05 Jul, 2014 8:25 pm

MacDougall wrote:We will win and win well.
Tell me this is one of your freakish predictions so I can relax.

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Unread post by happy tiger » Sat 05 Jul, 2014 8:51 pm

wtigers wrote:
MacDougall wrote:We will win and win well.
Tell me this is one of your freakish predictions so I can relax.

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Relax

16-12 Tigers ;)

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