Wests Tigers v Cowboys Preview

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Wests Tigers v Cowboys PreviewPrint
NRL.comWed, 14 Jul 2010

Wests Tigers v Cowboys
Leichhardt Oval
Monday 7pm

This certainly has turned into one of the modern day rivalries, and now that the Cowboys are in sudden death mode it shapes as an entertaining end to the games in Rivalry Round.

Since being combatants in the 2005 Grand Final, won by the Wests Tigers, the two teams have lifted when playing each other. Plus there is also the extra spice of Tim Sheens having coached both clubs for long periods.

If one was to glance at the NRL ladder and see the Wests Tigers flying along in third and the Cowboys languishing in 15th, they might be tempted to call this a foregone conclusion… not so.

You see, the Cowboys are now at true desperation levels, needing to win all eight of their remaining fixtures, while the Wests Tigers have played some brutal slogs of late in losing to the Dragons before getting home in close ones against the Broncos and Titans.

The home side might have the benefit of two extra days’ rest before this game, but they also have been stretched much further than the Cowboys and might be due for a slightly weaker effort. It doesn’t take much of a shift in intensity to get blown away in the NRL, so don’t write off the Cowboys yet.

For the home side, Robert Lui is due back at halfback, which allows Benji Marshall to push back to five-eighth, Chris Lawrence shifts wider to centre and Geoff Daniela goes to the wing with Mitch Brown moving to the bench.

Andrew Fifita is out of the side, with Junior Moors and veteran prop John Skandalis added to a six-man bench.

The Cowboys, who fell short against a Jarryd Hayne-inspired Eels last Monday night, are happy to have enforcer Luke O’Donnell back from his Origin II suspension. He pushes Dane Hogan from lock to the bench.

Ben Harris was originally left out of the same side but he will be recalled for Anthony Watts who was named before taking an early guilty plea and a week’s suspension at the judiciary.

Watch out Wests Tigers: Former Tiger now Cowboy enforcer Luke O’Donnell returns to the side after cooling his heels from an Origin suspension. With his worth being assessed on the open market as we speak, O’Donnell is primed for a mammoth performance of destruction and chaos – measured and legal though, of course. So far this season he is averaging 115 metres a game.

Also watch out for Willie Mason, another with his future in the air and another with a barnstorming running game of late. He is up at 114 metres a game.

Furthermore watch for Johnathan Thurston to produce a few chip-and-chase kicks in this game as with just 43 per cent of chip kicks successfully defused, the home-side Tigers are the worst in the NRL.

Worrying stat: the Tigers haven’t won consecutive games at Leichhardt Oval since 2006.

Watch out Cowboys: One man’s misfortune is another man’s opportunity, as Liam Fulton can attest.

With Gareth Ellis on a small injury hiatus, Fulton has returned to the starting side without skipping a beat. With some impressive pre-line passing skills and footwork, Fulton is a vital link in the Wests Tigers’ attacking arsenal, even if conventional stats don’t highlight it.

Defensively he has been a gem this season, making more than 39 tackles every week. The Cowboys have to find the balance when committing to Fulton as if they leave him be, he can break the line, but if they send numbers at him he can shift the ball both before and after contact.

Where it will be won: The little men on big men. With fatigue likely to play a major role in this match the result will come down to just how contained the likes of Wests Tigers Benji Marshall and Robert Lui, and Cowboys Johnathan Thurston and Matt Bowen are.

Both hookers in Aaron Payne (Cowboys) and Robbie Farah (Wests Tigers) are adept at spotting tired ruck defenders and they will direct traffic to the weakness before you can blink.

It will be a miracle if this match ends without at least four of the six above-mentioned players breaking the line, or assisting someone else through. The big props in this match are in for a torrid affair and could end the night with serious egg on their faces.

The history: Played 22; Wests Tigers 11, Cowboys 11\. Barring a draw, someone will come out ahead in the head-to-head stakes and if recent momentum is anything to go by it will be the Wests Tigers who have won six of the past eight, including a 23-16 win earlier this season.

The Tigers also hold a 3-1 advantage over the Cowboys at Leichhardt Oval.

Conclusion: Basically, you have to tip the Wests Tigers due to their form. But if you are in need of an upset as the scheduled rounds close out, this could be the place to find one.

The Tigers are due for a flat performance and coming up against a struggling team at home might lend itself to a little complacency.

Thurston and co. would love nothing more than to keep their slim season hopes alive – and dent their 2005 tormentors in the process.

Match officials: Referees – Shayne Hayne & Matt Cecchin; Sideline Officials – Paul Holland & David Munro; Video Ref – Phil Cooley.

Televised: Fox Sports – Live 7pm.
 

westTAHger

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this is one of those games that wests-tigers are expected to win.
the team needs to be switched on for full 80 minutes, otherwise they could end up on wrong side of the score board.
I do not care if its a scrappy game as long as west-tigers win.
 

coop

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We'll snot them.

Taumata and Thurston will feel like they spent the day on Omaha Beach on D Day by the time we finish with them. Heighington will stomp that arrogant little twerp into the Leichhardt soil and Taumata will spend most of the day picking grass out of his teeth.
 

tig_prmz

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The preview sounds more like they think it's going to be an upset. But I expect Tigers to flog them.
 

tigergirlz

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Watch out Cowboys for Liam Fulton???? Don't think he'll be our trump card. Pffft! rubbish article.
 
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Laurie Daley's round 19 preview

Wests Tigers v North Queensland Cowboys, Leichhardt Oval, Monday 7pm (EST)
The Cowboys are just not playing well as a unit, and defensively they have massive issues. Wests Tigers have too much to play for in this one. The Cowboys’ season is done and dusted and the Tigers have their sights set on a top two finish. End of story. Leichhardt Oval is always a happy hunting ground for the home team and I can’t see anything but a comfortable victory to the Tigers.
 

KingOvKingz09

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@willow said:
Laurie Daley's round 19 preview

Wests Tigers v North Queensland Cowboys, Leichhardt Oval, Monday 7pm (EST)
The Cowboys are just not playing well as a unit, and defensively they have massive issues. Wests Tigers have too much to play for in this one. The Cowboys’ season is done and dusted and the Tigers have their sights set on a top two finish. End of story. Leichhardt Oval is always a happy hunting ground for the home team and I can’t see anything but a comfortable victory to the Tigers.

:eek:pen_mouth: :eek:pen_mouth: :eek:pen_mouth:
 

tigerdre

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No excuses we should put the cowboys to the sword but geez i hate playing teams that are desperate.
I'm sure the boys will be right mentally but the cowboys will be hard to stop as it is their last chance for 2010

A little worried about this one :neutral_face:
 
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Preview: Wests Tigers v Cowboys
Adam Lucius

VENUE & TIME: Leichhardt Oval – Monday, July 19, 7.05pm.
COVERAGE: Fox Sports
HEAD TO HEAD: Played 22 – Tigers 11, Cowboys 11.
LAST TIME: Round 5, 2010 – Tigers 23-16.
MATCH ODDS:

TAB NZ: Tigers $1.28, Cowboys $3.40

WALKING WOUNDED: Gareth Ellis (groin) and Andrew Fifita (corked leg) are due back next week while Beau Ryan's return from a shoulder problem is slated for round 21\. But don’t be surprised if Ellis makes it on the field Monday night. He is dead keen to get another run at Leichhardt as it reminds him of some of those old Pommie grounds he grew up on. The Cowboys have lost lively utility Anthony Watts to suspension.

FORM: Almost without notice, Wests Tigers have climbed into third spot on the back of three straight wins and look set to play in the finals for the first time since they won the comp in '05\. They still have plenty of points in them but are noticeably stingier in defence this year, rated fourth best in the points against column. They will make it a hat-trick of wins with victory over NQ. You have to go back more than a month to find the last time the Cowboys were banging the dressing room bins celebrating a win. Three losses in a row has seen Neil Henry's team slide to 15th and another year without finals football is all but guaranteed. North Queensland's problems were there for all to see on Monday night at Parramatta. They conceded four tries in a crazy 10-minute period to go from 6-all to 30-6 down. They then decided to turn it on and twice got to within 12 points before running out of time. There is quality, it just isn't maintained for every minute of the 80.

WE THINK: Things could get out of hand if the Tigers get interested and the Cowboys' intensity is what it was at times last week. North Queensland has by far the worst defence in the NRL and its attack is completely reliant on Thurston. The Cowboys
have won just once at Leichhardt and won’t improve on that record this time around.Tigers by 22
 

Jazza

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@KingOvKingz09 said:
@willow said:
Laurie Daley's round 19 preview

Wests Tigers v North Queensland Cowboys, Leichhardt Oval, Monday 7pm (EST)
The Cowboys are just not playing well as a unit, and defensively they have massive issues. Wests Tigers have too much to play for in this one. The Cowboys’ season is done and dusted and the Tigers have their sights set on a top two finish. End of story. Leichhardt Oval is always a happy hunting ground for the home team and I can’t see anything but a comfortable victory to the Tigers.

:eek:pen_mouth: :eek:pen_mouth: :eek:pen_mouth:

Hmm Snoz says the Cowboys defend badly and the Tigers are at home so they will win. Bravo, brilliant preview, no way could I or the average footy fan beat that!

How about highlighting why the Cowboys defend badly, why they have only won 4 games this season or why it will be a comfortable win for the Tigers.

Once again with the Snoz, its not a preview, not enough info for a preview, its a prediction.
 
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Wests Tigers v North Queensland Cowboys
July 16, 2010

Monday, Leichhardt Oval, 7pm
Referees: Shayne Hayne, Matt Cecchin
Head to head: Wests Tigers 11, Cowboys 11.
Last clash: Wests Tigers 23-16 at Dairy Farmers Stadium (Rd 5, 2010)
TAB SportsBet: Wests Tigers $1.30, Cowboys $3.40
FootyTAB: Cowboys +8.5

North Queensland playmaker Johnathan Thurston might be tempted to don his Queensland Origin jersey when he runs out at Leichhardt Oval because the Cowboys have been awful, having lost 10 of their last 12 games. Their finals chances are now summed up by word coaches dread - "mathematical". They have not won at Leichhardt Oval since 2000, or beaten Wests Tigers in Sydney since round 25, 2004\. In contrast, the Wests Tigers are in third spot. But it is the manner in which they have scaled such heights that would most please coach Tim Sheens. Ditching their flashy ways, the Wests Tigers have dug in, muscled up and slogged their way to victories - claiming six of their past seven.

Key: Will enforcer Luke O'Donnell's return from his Origin suspension spark the Cowboys?
 

NZTiger

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Looks like with last nights results, and if the warriors and roosters are upset in their games (which could well happen), the Tigers will be playing for a handy 4 point buffer from 3rd to 4th.
 

Poppa

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Good preview willow.Wt should not take the Cowboys as easybeats:Any side that Thurston is in is always dangerous.I hope Lui is 1/2 back so Benji can play 5/8, with Lawrence in the centres,and give us more attacking options.I've been worried about this game all week.O'Donnell is back as well…...Maybe I'm worring over nought and WT will get a good win......

:sign: :supporter: :pray:
 

senexx

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Don't worry about worrying.

I'm worried too.

We need to remember this is our third origin game against QLD even though we won the first two and the series.
 
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