Willow's match report and player review

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willow
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Willow's match report and player review

Post by willow » Sun 21 Feb, 2010 9:35 pm

Wests Tigers will have to wait another year to try and win the Foundation Cup as they were outplayed by the Sydney Roosters this evening, going down 28-10. To be honest I was not surprised the Tigers were beaten however I was hoping for a closer result on the scoreboard. With the withdrawal of Todd Payten, Junior Moors was promoted to the front row while Matt Hyland and Jake Mullaney were late additions to the bench. Now onto the first half...

1st half:

Early field position went to the Roosters as they played their big pack straight up the middle with reasonable effect. The Tigers didn't help matters by giving away the occasional penalty, which resulted in a 2-0 lead early on. 12 minutes in the Roosters threw their most potent attacking weapon from last year at the Tigers - the bomb. It went up and Mitch Brown failed to get a good grab on it, it was then batted back to the Roosters who crossed out wide. Carney added the extras and the Roosters lead 8-0.

The Tigers first real attacking opportunity came a few minutes later after a good offload from Ellis found Marshall who sneaked his way through a gap into open space. Carney halted his progress 10 metres out and unfortunately Benji fumbled the ball trying to get a quick play-the-ball. The Tigers opened their account in the 22nd minute through Mitch Brown as the Tigers were camped on the Roosters tryline. The movement started through Heighington who found Marshall, who threw a nice pass to Lawrence who then drew 2 defenders before offloading to an unmarked Brown who crossed in the corner. Benji made no mistake with the sideline conversion and it was 8-6.

After 30 minutes Farah and Marshall were replaced by Daniela and Fitzhenry.

Unfortunately the Roosters were next to score. With 6 minutes left before halftime, Ryan and Moltzen made a horrible mess of a kick return. Ryan scooped the ball up, indicated to Moltzen he wanted to pop the ball up for him, and did so, except Moltzen either didn't realise it, or was horribly slow to respond, and the ball hit the deck off Moltzen's chest instead. The Roosters made them pay with Cherrington crossing between Matt Hyland and Mark Flanagan on a run aimed back towards the posts. Carney converted for a 14-6 lead. A late attacking raid just before halftime ended with no result for the Tigers.

2nd half:

The Tigers needed to score first but they didn't, 47 minutes in the Roosters split the Tigers on their tryline through Mitchell Pearce who put Todd Carney over close to the posts. Carney didn't miss the kick and now the score blew out to 20-6 and the Tigers were looking flat. It didn't get any better for the Tigers either, as they continued to give away penalties and failed to throw any significant attack against the Roosters. The Roosters went further in front as an attacking raid out wide saw Mitchell Pearce look set to score before he threw a nice ball to Perrett who crossed out wide. Carney again landed the conversion for a 26-6 lead.

With the Tigers looking down and out, Sheens threw Marshall, Farah and Heighington back into the mix and suddenly the Tigers looked more dangerous in attack. In the 56th minute, Lui finally did something decent in attack and threw a nice pass out wide for Chris Lawrence to score in the corner. Benji's sideline conversion was waved away with the Tigers trailing 26-10. The only further trouble to the scoreboard was another penalty goal to the Roosters to leave the final score at 28-10.

I left with 5 minutes to go so young Jake Mullaney did not get any more game time than 5 minutes as I did not notice him run as I was leaving.

Onto the players:

1. Moltzen - Average I have to say. Positioning at the back was poor for the most part and his attack was also ineffective today. Didn't have much to do in defence either. Plenty of improvement left in him and hopefully he shows it next week against the Sharks.

2. Brown - He was ok I thought. He's got decent size but he's no Tuiaki. Decent pace but not blindingly quick. I think he'll be there for round 1 though, he went better than Daniela.

3. Ayshford - Didn't really get any quality ball. Made one decent break in the first half only to lose the ball. Defence was fine though and he's a strong fella. Look for improvement against the Sharks.

4. Lawrence - Got one nice pass from Lui which resulted ina try in the corner. Otherwise Lawrence did not find any open space and played at 5/8 for a bit while Marshall was off. Defence was good and he belted Ben Jones.

5. Ryan - Limited opportunities and didn't shine as a result. Bad mix-up with Moltzen late in the first half, but the ball was there for Moltzen to catch. Probably has the other wing spot sewn up.

6. Marshall - Didn't play the whole game but still the Tigers most dangerous back. Came up with a cracker of a shot on Minichello in the second half. Kicking game was quiet.

7. Lui - Hmm...Mixed thoughts on young Rob...Defence was ok, it's definitely improved from last year. His long kicking game also found open space relatively easy, although the long kicking game was not employed too often. His short kicking game today sucked I have to say. Numerous short attacking kicks either went over the dead ball line or straight to a Roosters player. He also failed to run the ball which let him down. He's at his best when he runs the ball but today he failed to do so. Got some work in front of him if he's going to hold down the 7.

8. Galloway - The main man to go forward for the Tigers today. Looked pretty fit and got decent minutes. Lord of the Rangas is in for a good season IMO.

9. Farah - Relatively quiet, looked to spark the side several times in attack but the Tigers were uncharacteristically quiet in attack today. Farah didn't really kick the ball either. His defence was sound.

15. Moors - Decent build on him but I'm not convinced he should be used in the front row. He's big enough, but he didn't go forward like Galloway did IMO. Would be much better utilised as a wide running second rower like Ellis. Gave Moltzen a nice hospital pass early on but not the worst Tiger out there.

11. Ellis - Pretty decent game from the big G. The only Tiger who looked to get an offload away and he got away several good offloads. Went ok in attack and the next best forward on the park behind KG. Gave away a couple of penalties.

12. Fulton - Went alright I thought. Several good touches with the ball in hand and defended well. He's not a linebreaker but he did look good playing before the line with the ball. A Gatorade must have exploded inside of him with 14 minutes remaining as he came up with a massive Dragonball Z spew all over the field.

13. Heighington - Looked pretty good to me. Didn't get belted or bent back much in comparison to last year. Looked very fit and hopefully in for a big year.

14. Cayless - Looked ok considering he's had a long time out. Bound to improve as he gains match fitness. Similar in build and size to Galloway and hopefully he adds just as much impact as KG does. Pretty confident he'll start off the bench in round 1.

16. Flanagan - Similar in size to Fulton and went ok. Defended well and showed good line speed, one of the fitter Tiger forwards out there and could offer a utility role off the bench. Not sure whether he'll get a run in the top 17 to start with though.

17. Schirnack - Had similar impact to Moors in attack I thought. Probably just shaded by Moors though. If injuries strike he could be thereabouts, but with Gibbs and Payten to return I'd Al will start the year for BRET.

18. Daniela - Did nothing in attack, although was given no real opportunity and not as strong in defence as Lawrence and Ayshford. Played some centre and some wing and I can't see him starting in FG at this stage.

19. Fitzy - Off to Balmain for Fitzy me thinks. He didn't do anything poorly, but offered very little out of dummyhalf when he replaced Farah and he didn't really get any ball when he played wing in the second half. The Tigers have better options in both positions though.

20. Hyland - Not ready for FG yet, although he had a go. Has the makings for a future FG lock, but not just yet. He'll go well in the 20's though and could benefit from some gametime in State Cup too.

1. Mullaney - I left with 5 to go so didn't see him get on.


Overall Analysis:

Attack:

Poor. The Tigers didn't throw a great deal at the Roosters which was a bit surprising. Benji looked the most dangerous with Farah behind him. Lui was content to catch and pass for the most part where I felt he should have tried to run the ball more. The Tigers have a long way to go in attack as they didn't really try and new set attacking plays either. Handing errors also cost the side.

Defence:

Apart from a big hit from Lawrence and Marshall, the Tigers defence was average. There was a poor miss from Flanagan and Hyland to let Cherrington score just before halftime. Otherwise the Tigers have some work stiffening up the defence a bit. This should be helped by the return of Gibbs and Payten.

Kicking game:

Terrible. Lui found open space a couple of times but the Tigers long kicking game was used far too infrequently Lui's short kicking game was terrible. Marshall kicked a little bit but not much and same goes for Farah, so there's plenty of work to do and plenty of improvement left.

Overall:

The Tigers looked to go through the motions today IMO, treating the match as a trial while the Roosters clearly wanted to win. They were the more hungry side and Carney and Pearce looked good together. I'm confident the Tigers will turn this around though when they play the Roosters in a few weeks.

As far as positions go, well I'm not sure whether Sheens should keep Moltzen at 1 and Lui at 7. Neither player stood out today. Moltzen's attack was quiet, as was Lui's. Lui has improved in defence and has a decent long kicking game, although his short kicking game was way off. Still question marks over halfback at this stage. Lui needs to get his running game in order if he's going to stay there.

I'll be interested to see what lineup Sheens names to take on the Sharks, and whether the Tigers lift the intensity. Again, they looked content just to gain match fitness today and go through the motions. They didn't try anything flash so I guess the attack will ramp up a bit next week. I didn't notice any injuries which was good, and finally, on my way out I bumped into Nu Akeripa and Simon Dwyer who were making an early escape also. Both players reckon they'll be right to play in 2-3 weeks for the season opener.

I've called it as good as I saw it today. For others who were there, feel free to add your thoughts and comments.


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Post by tiga4eva » Sun 21 Feb, 2010 9:43 pm

Pretty good wrap-up Wil.I have to say i was most dissappointed in Lui tonight.I don't think he has anywhere near the fitness levels to play NRL.I also have had a re-think on Fulton.His defence was awesome and he'll nab a spot in the 17. I was most pleased with Benji,beacause he seemed the most urgent Tiger on the field and he did the basics well,which i feel he's struggled with.So, nothings changed we still havn't won the Foundation Cup and i still hate trials.

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Post by cnx_tigers » Sun 21 Feb, 2010 9:45 pm

Re Mulhaney............he played the final 54 seconds and that was only because Benji was hurt.

Why would you pick a kid for the game (He was taken off very early in the 20s and warmed up and did all drills with the first grade team).............and then not play him? Everyone else was getting up off the bench / coming back. He just sat there and was slumped in his seat with 10 to go when he must have realised he was not getting on.

It was a trial. Everyone gets a run. Yet Sheens left him there all game booted up and waiting. I've got no idea what goes through Tim's head.

Re Lui. He was all those things you mentioned.....didn't run at all, didn't call for the ball, horrible short kicking game.

Those are the things a 7 needs to do though, so his game was very poor. He needs to be aggressive or not in the team. You can't carry a passive half back.

In fainress, Benji always calls for two plays in attack..........Robbie calls for two.......and the first in normally a hitr up. That leaves one play for Lui, the clearing kick. The only break away from this is a round around for Liam.
Is there room for a dominant half the way Sheens plays now? Since Prince left, we've not had a 7 dominate the ball.

Re Shirnack,I disagree with you. I thought he added toughness when he came on and was aggressive. I'd have him in our 17 all season. He's got mongrel.

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Post by willow » Sun 21 Feb, 2010 9:55 pm

tiga4eva wrote:Pretty good wrap-up Wil.I have to say i was most dissappointed in Lui tonight.I don't think he has anywhere near the fitness levels to play NRL.I also have had a re-think on Fulton.His defence was awesome and he'll nab a spot in the 17. I was most pleased with Benji,beacause he seemed the most urgent Tiger on the field and he did the basics well,which i feel he's struggled with.So, nothings changed we still havn't won the Foundation Cup and i still hate trials.
I don't think his fitness levels were the problem, I thought he went ok in defence and had improved from last year, it's just that he failed to take any sort of command in attack, and as a result he didn't run the ball when he should have been working hard on this.

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Post by Kul » Sun 21 Feb, 2010 9:58 pm

Gibbs
Payten
Tuiaki
Tuqiri

there was a lot of talent missing from the field today
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Post by Danos » Sun 21 Feb, 2010 10:03 pm

New recruits were some of the best on the field IMO. Moors & Cayless were good, Fulton was brilliant IMO. Flanagan was quiet impressive too.

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Post by Captain Awesome » Sun 21 Feb, 2010 10:03 pm

From what I saw Flanaghan has more size than Fulton, and has put on weight since last season
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Post by simonthetiger » Sun 21 Feb, 2010 10:05 pm

I thought Lawrence hada craacker of a game......plenty of big hits,and gave theb last ball for space or a try.

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Post by benjibrotown » Sun 21 Feb, 2010 10:08 pm

Kul wrote:Gibbs
Payten
Tuiaki
Tuqiri

there was a lot of talent missing from the field today
Having said that Roosters missing:
Warrear Hargraves
Braith Anasta
Jason Ryles

And from what people are saying on this forum sounds like we will have to get used to life with Tuiaki for a while. :cry:

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Post by The Phantom » Sun 21 Feb, 2010 10:10 pm

I think your match report is spot on,from what I saw out there tonight....well done.

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Post by The Phantom » Sun 21 Feb, 2010 10:14 pm

Danos wrote:New recruits were some of the best on the field IMO. Moors & Cayless were good, Fulton was brilliant IMO. Flanagan was quiet impressive too.
Fulton was ordinary..adds nothing to our pack.

Flanagan was reasonable ,but did not see a lot of game time.Showed some promise thou.

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Post by Geo. » Sun 21 Feb, 2010 10:32 pm

The Phantom wrote:
Danos wrote:New recruits were some of the best on the field IMO. Moors & Cayless were good, Fulton was brilliant IMO. Flanagan was quiet impressive too.
Fulton was ordinary..adds nothing to our pack.

Flanagan was reasonable ,but did not see a lot of game time.Showed some promise thou.
Futlon ordinary...Really...He has the best ball skills of any of our forwards including Ellis....The Fulton , Farah Ryan combo down the right will yield plenty of points this season...........

What about Lawrence the kid is a Superstar.....
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Geo nailed it...

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Post by crouching_tiger » Sun 21 Feb, 2010 10:44 pm

Another rubbish match report IMO. I seriously dunno what games you watch.. :lol:
QUOTE WestsTigers:"Fitzhenry is a very experienced player and will assist in providing leadership to the younger players in the Wests Tigers squad"

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Post by BRET » Sun 21 Feb, 2010 11:36 pm

Fulton was in great defence, he slows them down by throwing his body at them and twisting, or he stops them altogether. And he knows how to offload too. Not his best game but I've seen what he can do and I know there is more to come from him. I was satisfied.

Loved a few things Benji did, impressed also with Lawrence and Ellis. Concerned about Lui and Moltzen's game but it's only a trial I suppose so I won't be too judgemental. I would of liked to see more of what Fitzy could offer, wasn't impressed by him other than his good looks lol.

Overall the team don't seem as big as they did last seasons start. Have they trimmed down??
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Post by Paris Cobbs » Sun 21 Feb, 2010 11:43 pm

Thanks Willow. Now that I live in France, your reports are going to be just about all I'll know about how we play.

Sounded pretty dismal over all. That's also our greatest losing margin in the Foundation Cup, isn't it?
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Post by king sirro » Mon 22 Feb, 2010 5:50 am

The Phantom wrote:
Danos wrote:New recruits were some of the best on the field IMO. Moors & Cayless were good, Fulton was brilliant IMO. Flanagan was quiet impressive too.
Fulton was ordinary..adds nothing to our pack.

Flanagan was reasonable ,but did not see a lot of game time.Showed some promise thou.
Fulton was only just behind Ellis as our best forward. I wasnt a fan of bringing him back, but if he plays like that every week ill be more than happy. Cant see how Sheens can justify keeping Heighington in first grade though ahead of our young talent.
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Post by willow » Mon 22 Feb, 2010 7:42 am

crouching_tiger wrote:Another rubbish match report IMO. I seriously dunno what games you watch.. :lol:
Maybe I should have asked you for your thoughts on the game since you were sitting right in front of me. Instead of posting rubbish, why don't you tell us how you rated the team's performance CT?

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Post by Geo. » Mon 22 Feb, 2010 7:45 am

king sirro wrote:
Fulton was only just behind Ellis as our best forward. I wasnt a fan of bringing him back, but if he plays like that every week ill be more than happy. Cant see how Sheens can justify keeping Heighington in first grade though ahead of our young talent.
I told you so....Go Liam.... :D

Heighno on the other hand...I'm really starting to see your point......
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2. The Star of the Team is the Team
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Tiger Watto wrote:
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Geo nailed it...

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