POOR FIRST HALF COSTS WESTS TIGERS DEARLY

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Kickoff: 7:30pm, Sat 14 May
Venue: ANZ Stadium, Sydney Olympic Park
Telecast: FoxSports2
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willow
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POOR FIRST HALF COSTS WESTS TIGERS DEARLY

Post by willow » Sun 15 May, 2011 11:11 am

POOR FIRST HALF COSTS WESTS TIGERS DEARLY
By Wayne Cousins
14/05/2011 9:28:28 PM

A poor first half performance proved costly for Wests Tigers in their 29-18 loss to South Sydney Rabbitohs at ANZ Stadium tonight in round 10 of the Telstra Premiership.

In their worst 40 minutes of the season, a sluggish Wests Tigers trailed 27-0 at half-time before rallying in the second half in front of a criowd of 18, 245.

South Sydney opened the scoring in the 7th minute when winger Nathan Merritt dived on a grubber kick by half-back Chris Sandow. Sandow converted from the sideline to give the home side a 6-0 lead.

Sandow stretched the lead to 8-0 in the 12th minute when he converted a penalty goal from 25 metres out after Wests Tigers were caught offside.

Wests Tigers first attacking opportunity came in the 14th minute when a grubber kick behind the line by five-eighth Benji Marshall rolled ingoal only for Sandow to put his body in between captain Robbie Farah to allow the ball to go dead.

In the next set, Souths prop Ben Ross offloaded to hooker Isaac Luke who split the defence to pass to full-back Rhys Wesser to score under the posts. Sandow converted the try for a 14-0 lead after 16 minutes.

A horrible mistake by Wests Tigers winger Matt Utai in allowing a drop out from Sandow to roll past him and into touch on the halfway line gave Souths a scrum feed.

In the next set, a crossfield bomb on the last tackle by five-eighth John Sutton saw centre Shaune Corrigan catch the ball before offloading to second-rower Dave Tyrrell who put througha grubber kick for winger Fetuli Talanoa to score. Sandow converted the try for a 20-0 lead.

Two minutes later, Sutton and Sandow combined to send centre Dylan Farrell to score out wide. Sandow converted from the sideline for a 26-0 lead after 37 minutes.

Sandow then landed a 30 metre field goal in the 39th minute to make it 27-0 at half-time.

2nd Half
Farah opened Wests Tigers account in the 45th minute when he ran to the line from dummy half to beat Eddy Pettybourne to score under the posts. Marshall converted the try to leave Wests Tigers trailing 27-6.

Wests Tigers were denied a try in the 50th minute when a long cut out pass by Marshall to Utai saw the pass called forward.

Utai was not to be denied two minutes later when Farah delivered a cut out pass to Utai to score out wide for a 27-10 scoreline. Marshall converted the try from the sideline to leave Wests Tigers trailing 27-12 after 53 minutes.

Sandow stretched the lead to 29-12 in the 56th minute after he landed a 30 metre penalty goal after prop Keith Galloway was penalised.

Marshall denied Souths a try in the 59th minute when he held up Wesser in the corner with the aid of full-back Wade McKinnon.

A big right foot step by Marshall saw him dive over for a try. Marshall converted his own try to leave Wests Tigers trailing 29-18 after 67 minutes.

A knock on by McKinnon on a crossfield bomb spilt by Merritt saw the full-back denied a try in the 73rd minute.

In the end, the first half deficit was just too much for Wests Tigers to pull in. The loss leaves Wests Tigers on 10 points with 4 wins and 5 losses.

Wests Tigers Head Coach Tim Sheens was very frustrated after the match.

Tim Sheens refused to comment on what he said to his players at halftime.

"Through the middle was very, very ordinary," Sheens said.

"We at least came back and did something in the second half but for a team that has aspirations for doing something this season that was pretty poor."

Wests Tigers play Penrith at Campbelltown Sports Stadium on Saturday May 21.


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Post by willow » Sun 15 May, 2011 11:13 am

Astounding, splendid, amazing and overwhelming - yes, the Bunnies were that good
Phil Gould
May 15, 2011

South Sydney's first half of football last night was simply awesome. I don't think I've seen them play better.

Other words for awesome include overwhelming, breathtaking, splendid, tremendous, amazing and astounding. They were all of these things. They totally destroyed the Wests Tigers last night with a surge of scintillating attacking football.

It was expected the under-strength Rabbits would come out firing. Injuries to big-name players provided opportunities for some of the lesser-known understudies to show their wares. Such situations often lead to a spike in excitement and enthusiasm. This was no exception.
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However, nothing happens without leadership. Kids can show energy and it makes your team competitive. If the talented senior players show energy, well, it usually makes your team unbeatable. This was the key to Souths setting up their 27-0 half-time lead last night.

Michael Crocker led the way. His effervescence was matched by big forwards Ben Ross and Dave Taylor. In fact, all the Souths forwards threw themselves into their work and they completely out-punched the Tigers pack. This provided the time and space for key playmakers Chris Sandow, Issac Luke and Rhys Wesser to completely run amok.

There was nothing clinical about Souths' attacking play. It was just a simple formula of playing fast, galloping over the advantage line and supporting the man with the ball. Much of their passing was ad-libbed. Their attacking kick options were spontaneous rather than planned. Their passing rushes were instinctive rather than as a result of rehearsed patterns of play.

They tore the Tigers defence apart around the middle of the play-the-ball area. Offloads in tackles and lightning quick play-the-balls were far too much for the laborious Tigers forwards to contain. The consistent half-breaks and clean line-breaks had the South Sydney fans delirious. It was brilliant stuff.

Many may question the price of Sandow's new deal with Parramatta next season - I don't. Dangerous, quick-thinking, fleet-footed halfbacks with the ability to create tries out of nothing and kick goals with a 90 per cent success rate are rare these days. His short line drop-out and regather in the 70th minute of play when his team was under the pump was sheer genius. Yes it was risky; but stunning just the same. It made you stand and applaud. The Eels have invested wisely.

The disappointing part of the Rabbitohs' performance was their lack of killer instinct in the second half. They had the Tigers at their mercy and could've run a big number on their rivals; instead they chose to cruise down the home straight and really invited the Tigers to mount something of a comeback.

In the first half, the Tigers looked like blokes who had planned something better for their Saturday night entertainment, only to get a last-minute phone call from the boss demanding they come back to work.

They were present in body, but not in mind. The quality of their work was unprofessional. Their attack went sideways and backwards. They resorted to poorly executed kicks trying to pluck a miracle out of nowhere. Their defence was brittle and non-committed. It was really poor.

Both teams could learn from the NRL's defending premiers.

The thing that sets the St George-Illawarra Dragons apart from the rest of the competition is their consistent intensity. When you watch the Dragons play, you know exactly what you are going to get. The same goes for the individual members of the team. Consistency from week to week, consistency from minute to minute - they compete on every play, every minute, for the full 80 minutes. The Dragons set the standard for this attitude and attitude control.

Both South Sydney and the Tigers can match it with the best of them; but they can also match it with the worst of them.

I guess it comes down to what kind of team and what kind of player you really want to be. Last night though, the Bunnies were brilliant and deserved their victory. Well done lads.

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Post by Captain Awesome » Sun 15 May, 2011 3:10 pm

FIFITA REMINDS BLUES ORIGIN SELECTORS
Ben Horne, AAP
May 15, 2011, 1:56 pm

Wests Tigers rising star Andrew Fifita says he hasn't given up on earning a surprise NSW State of Origin jumper this series.

The 21-year-old might be considered a little raw for the step up to representative level, but the explosive prop believes he has the size and impact to spark a Blues team off the bench.

In Saturday night's 29-18 loss to South Sydney, Fifita played a leading role in the Tigers second half comeback.

The 194cm, 112kg giant is one of the most destructive tackle-breaking front rowers in the competition and leads the NRL's props in this category.

Fifita isn't getting ahead of himself and is conscious of biding his time in the NRL, but can't hide his drive to one day represent.

The Griffith product of Tongan heritage had already changed his allegiance from his parent's country of origin to be eligible for NSW.

"I'd love to play Origin. I've played for my country already and I've changed my alliance already and I just want to play Origin so bad. I reckon it's one of the biggest things that will ever happen in my life," Fifita told AAP.

"I guess I'm just trying to stick to form and just trying to get a gig. My eyes are set for the third Origin (match), see if I can get into that.

"Everyone adds their own little spark and I hope one day I can get in there and do my own thing and maybe, if they choose me, I can get in there and do a job (this year).

"But I've only played 31 games and I'm always going to put club footy first and wait for my opportunity to come."

Trailing 27-0 to the Rabbitohs at halftime, Fifita revealed senior players Robbie Farah and Benji Marshall tore strips off Tigers players in the dressing rooms at the break.

The Tigers defence through the middle of the field was flimsy to say the least.

Fifita said the young Tigers, without strong defenders Bryce Gibbs and Gareth Ellis, were better than what they showed against Souths.

"I guess it comes down to just working together. We're good, we are missing two of our main defence players, so it's just more the young ones who need to step up and stick tight and talk," he said.

"We made it pretty clear at halftime that we need to go out with a good hitout.

"It wasn't Sheensy (coach Tim Sheens who yelled). It was more the captain (Farah) and the older boys in the team telling us to step up. They had a bit of a yelling at us that we need to toughen up."

http://au.news.yahoo.com/a/-/sport/9445 ... selectors/
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Post by citizen cub » Sun 15 May, 2011 3:14 pm

Poor is not the word to describe. Something a lot worse than that, 27 points in a half is bad enough, what about conceding that to an undermanned Souths outfit?
With Wests in the finals, ANYTHING'S POSSIBLE

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