Media Reports

Tigers hit top form at Leichhardt Oval with 34-14 win over North Queensland
By Adrian Warren
July 19, 2009 Wests Tigers kept their NRL finals hopes alive with a 34-14 win over North Queensland Cowboys in a fiery clash at Leichhardt Oval.

The Tigers scored six tries to two and remained within four points of eighth spot, rallying after they conceded a Matt Bowen try after just 44 seconds.

The Cowboys made plenty of metres in the opening quarter and led 8-0 after ten minutes, but were then held scoreless for 65 minutes as the Tigers poured on 20 unanswered points.

The game exploded at two scrums in a five-minute period in the first half.

After 23 minutes, Cowboys hooker Anthony Watts appeared to punch Tigers counterpart Robbie Farah.

Watts was cautioned after Tigers five-eighth Benji Marshall scored with a solo run from the scrum, which was awarded after a Willie Tonga knock-on close to their line.

Five minutes later, Farah and Watts were both sin-binned after a scuffle at the next scrum.

After looking shellshocked in the first ten minutes, the Tigers turned the game around in the final ten minutes of the half, which ended with them holding a 16-8 lead.

Some typical Tigers razzle dazzle produced tries to centre Chris Lawrence and winger Taniela Tuiaki, the latter coming just a few seconds after the two hookers returned to the field.

Young fullback Shannon Gallant outpaced the Cowboys’ defence to add another try nine minutes into the second half.

The Tigers started to make mistakes and the Cowboys closed to within six points after Johnathan Thurston converted a Carl Webb try with 12 minutes left.

But the home team put the issue beyond doubt two minutes later, when Corey Payne crossed for their fifth try and then Farah added a sixth. Marshall finished with 14 points.

WESTS TIGERS BEAT COWBOYS 34-14
By Wayne Cousins at Leichhardt Oval.
Sunday, July 19, 2009
Wests Tigers kept their semi-final aspirations alive with a crushing 34-14 victory over the North Queensland Cowboys at historic Leichhardt Oval today in round 19 of the Telstra Premiership.

In front of a crowd of 18,804 on a perfect Sunday afternoon, Wests Tigers overcame a slow start to storm home to beat the Cowboys to move to 18 competition points - just four points outside the top eight.

The win was built on some committed defence and some superb performances led by captain and hooker Robbie Farah,who bravely fought a bout of tonsilitis to take to the field.

North Queensland Cowboys opened the scoring in front of a packed crowd at Leichhardt Oval after just 44 seconds when a break by hooker Anthony Watts and gave an inside ball to send full-back Matthew Bowen in under the posts.

Half-back and captain Johnathan Thurston converted the try from in front for a 6-0 lead.

A crossfield kick on the last tackle by captain and hooker Robbie Farah led to a break by centre Ty Williams whcih took play 60 metres downfield. A few tackles later, the Cowboys received a penalty in front of the posts.

Thurston converted the try for a 8-0 lead after 11 minutes.

Wests Tigers had a good attacking opportunity in the 20th minute and kept the ball alive well inside the Cowboys quarter.

However it all came unstuck when a long cut out pass by five-eighth Benji Marshall went over the sideline instead of finding winger Beau Ryan.

Marshall made up for his mistake three minutes later when he raced acrossfield and showed the ball before finding a gap to score in the corner for a 8-4 scoreline.

The try came from a scrum win after centre Willie Tonga dropped the ball from dummy half 10 metres out from his line.

Farah came off worse for wear when Watts connected with a punch from the scrum. Watts was warned but no action was taken.

Marshall converted the try from the sideline in front of the packed hill for a 8-6 scoreline.

Two minutes later, a scrum was packed with Watts throwing punches at Farah. A small melee erupted with Farah coming out of it at the back. Watts was this time sent to the sin-bin for 10 minutes by referee Shayne Hayne, much to the roar and approval of the Wests Tigers faithful.

The faithful then booed the decision by Hayne to send Farah to the sin-bin for 10 minutes as well before giving Farah a standing ovation. The penalty went to Wests Tigers with play going inside the Cowboys quarter.

The pressure was relieved when a grubber kick by Marshall went dead.

Marshall again made up for his slight mistake when the ball was spread left after a strong run acrossfield by winger Taniela Tuiaki to find Marshall who sent centre Chris Lawrence down the left flank to score for a 10-8 lead after 34 minutes.

Marshall converted the try for a 12-8 lead.

Tuiaki was then involved two minutes later when he crossed for a try out wide after he finished off a backline play involving Marshall and Lawrence for a 16-8 lead. Marshall failed to convert the try.

Wests Tigers faithful gave their heroes a standing ovation as they left the field for half-time after trailing 8-0 early.

2nd Half

Two minutes into the second half, a perfectly timed hit by John Morris on a clearing kick by Thurston saw the half-back stay down on the ground but both referees played on.

Wests Tigers bombed a tryscoring opportunity three minutes later when half-back Tim Moltzen got on the outside of the defence to pass inside to centre BlakeAyshford who dropped the ball five metres from the tryline with one man to beat.

A minute later, a great inside ball by Marshall put full-back Shannon Gallant into the clear. ‘Mighty Mouse’ raced 40 metres towards the corner to outbeat the cover defence to score for a 20-8 lead. Marshall failed to convert the try.

North Qld applied plenty of pressure on the Wests Tigers defence for five minutes after the 50 minute mark but the home side dug deep. One such play by prop John Skandalis in forcing a mistake from knock-on in making a tackle saw his team-mates run in and pat him on the head for such an inspirational play.

The Cowboys scored a soft try in the 64th minute when second-rower Carl Webb stepped and crashed his way over from dummy half through the attempted tackle of Farah and Gallant.

Thurston converted the try for a 20-14 scoreline.

Wests Tigers got back to a 10 point lead when lock Corey Payne burrowed his way over from dummy half in the 69th minute to score next to the posts. Payne moved to dummy half after Farah dropped back to call the next play with Marshall. The try came on the back of a superb 60 metre break by Marshall from a quick penalty tap.

Marshall converted the try for a 26-14 scoreline with eight minutes remaining.

A minute later, Wests Tigers elected to go for goal 25 metres out through Marshall after Matt Bowen was penalised for dropping the right arm into the neck of Moltzen in making a kick return.

Marshall converted the penalty for a 28-14 scoreline.

A minute later from the re-start, a break down the grandstand flank by Tuiaki saw him tackled. A quick play the ball saw prop Todd Payten pulled down short of the line. Wests Tigers got a penalty for the Cowboys being off-side.

From the penalty and a few plays later, Farah put a short grubber kick through when it appeared nothing was on to break through the last line of defence to dive on the ball and salute the Wests Tigers fans behind the posts.

Marshall converted the try for a 34-14 lead with the score remaining that way till full-time.

For the Wests Tigers, Farah, Benji Marshall,Gareth Ellis, Corey Payne, Tim Moltzen and Shannon Gallant all had strong games. Debutant Simon Dwyer, up from the Toyota Cup, made a solid debut in the time he had on the field.

The NRL victory capped off a great day for Tigers supporters with earlier wins to the Wests Tigers in the Toyota Cup and to the Balmain Ryde Eastwood Tigers.

Wests Tigers now travel to the ACT to play Canberra Raiders next Sunday in another must-win match.

Tigers extend Cowboys’ horror run
By Daniel Franklin

Posted July 19, 2009 17:00:00
Updated July 19, 2009 18:37:00


Wests Tigers have extended North Queensland’s horror record away from Townsville with a 34-14 victory at Leichhardt Oval.

Half-back Benji Marshall was rampant for the Tigers, who dominated possession and scored six tries to one after trailing 8-0 early.

A hungry Tigers defence was determined not to relinquish the upper hand despite being under pressure for extended periods in the second half.

But no sooner had Carl Webb given the Cowboys hope of a grandstand finish, Corey Payne stole a try close in to the posts three minutes later to reinstate the 12-point lead for the Tigers.

A late penalty goal and a brilliant kick-and-chase play by Robbie Farah provided the final margin.

The Cowboys have not tasted victory in Sydney since August 2007, while the result has given the Tigers hope of reaching the finals for the first time since winning the premiership in 2005.

Marshall said his team showed Sunday they were desperate to make a late run at the finals. The Tigers travel to Canberra next week before hosting a crucial clash against Manly.

“We’re trying to get back playing with a bit of style and flair,” Marshall said. "Some of it came off and some of it didn’t.

"We’ve always had the belief [we could reach the finals]. It’s good to get the two points but there’s still a long way to go.

“My form was a bit up and down. I made a few mistakes today but it was only from trying too hard. Sometimes I’ve got to pull myself back a bit.”

After the Cowboys raced to a 8-0 lead within 10 minutes, the momentum of the game shifted after a first-half scrum erupted into a fight involving Cowboys hooker Anthony Watts and his opposite number Farah. Both were sin-binned.

Lifted by a vocal home support, the Tigers cut loose in attack while their enthusiastic defence was able to mobilise its numbers to quell Cowboys playmakers Johnathan Thurston and Matt Bowen.

Cowboys coach Neil Henry said fundamental errors cost his team dearly after they got off to a rare flying start away from home.

“We made a couple of crucial errors where we turned the ball over too close to our line before we could get our kick away, and territorially we struggled from there,” Henry said.

"[Wests] got some tries with good speed on our right edge and a couple of errors gifted them field position.

"But to get back to 20-14 with 13 minutes to go, it was game on again.

“But then a couple of fundamental errors - players turning their back around the ruck, a try from dummy half, Benji Marshall takes a quick tap - we weren’t alert and facing where the ball is and we paid the ultimate price.”

http://blogs.abc.net.au/files/marshall_rd19.mp3
http://blogs.abc.net.au/files/farah_rd19.mp3
http://blogs.abc.net.au/files/sheens_rd19.mp3

Tigers hit top form at Leichhardt Oval with 34-14 win over North Queensland
By Adrian Warren
July 19, 2009 NRL Boss David Gallop surely wouldn’t approve, but a bit of old fashioned biff provided the spark for the West Tigers’ 34-14 home win over North Queensland at Leichhardt Oval.

Conceding a try to North Queensland’s Matt Bowen after just 44 seconds, the Tigers trailed 8-0 after 10 minutes against a Cowboys side making plenty of easy metres.

But momentum changed after punches were thrown at two scrums five minutes apart.
Tigers captain and hooker Robbie Farah was struck by Cowboys counterpart Antony Watts.

In the next scrum, the Tigers got square with Watts with the North Queensland rake on the receiving end of a number of blows. Both hookers were sin-binned, but it was the Tigers who prospered most, racing to a 16-8 halftime lead.

“The first scrum, he hit me, I don’t know why, I didn’t do anything to him, it was a bit of a king hit,” Farah said.

“The refs did nothing about it. I wanted a bit of a square up.

“The second scrum, the ref told me to keep it short and sweet and it was.”

Watts, who set up the Cowboys’ opening try, said he recalled being struck by an elbow.

“I’m not sure if it was Robbie, but it came towards me and I just reacted,” Watts said.

Asked what happened at the second scrum, Watts replied: “I don’t know if it was Robbie or not because there was a fair few of them hitting me.”

Five-eighth Benji Marshall scored a solo try after the first scrum eruption.

Subsequent razzle dazzle tries to centre Chris Lawrence and winger Taniela Tuiaki set up the Tigers’ eight-point halftime buffer.

Tigers coach Tim Sheens and his players were adamant the old fashioned bust ups helped turn around their performance following their lacklustre start.

“That was a bit of a turning point for us, because it certainly got our adrenaline levels up,” Sheen said.

The Tigers’ Great Britain Test forward Gareth Ellis agreed.

“When you see one of your blokes on the floor with a split eye, it does rally the troops and I thought we responded pretty well,” he said.

Wests appeared to be in control when fullback Shannon Gallant crossed nine minutes into the second half, but some turnovers and penalties against the home team switched the momentum.

A converted try to forward Carl Webb got the Cowboys to within six points with 13 minutes remaining.

However, a quick tap and 60m bust from Marshall set up a try to Corey Payne and Farah added another one in the closing moments.

Sheens was adamant teams were continuing to target Farah around the ruck.

“It’s very obvious to me that sides are doing everything they can to take Robbie out of the game,” Sheens said.

Cowboys coach Neil Henry said his team paid the price for not being alert enough around the ruck at a couple of key moments including when Marshall took his quick tap.

“Some behaviours out there were unacceptable for first grade, you can’t let someone just run past you,” Henry said.

“a fair few of them hitting me” 😆 nice try Watts. All those punches came from one guys hand

@smeghead:

“a fair few of them hitting me” 😆 nice try Watts. All those punches came from one guys hand

hahahaha what a cat reply from watts ……and i cant ever recall robbie throwing a punch on the footy field…

Robbie “Fists of Fury” Farah. I like it. 😉

the 2nd fight happened right in front of where i was siting. it was so good 2 watch. watts had no chance in hell of getting a single punch in. he got belted fair n square. i can not believe the refs let him off 4 the dog shot of robbie minutes earlier n im so happy robbie smashed him n then gave his thoughts in the press conference by saying it was a square-up. hahahahahahaha love ya robbie.

YOU just knew the next time they packed a scrum that it would be on - and it was. Rival hookers Robbie Farah and Anthony Watts started getting into each other as soon as they put their heads down and once they stood up they were swinging punches. And it all began because of what Farah described as a “king hit”.

As Wests Tigers five-eighth Benji Marshall scored a try in the 23rd minute, his captain, Farah, was getting up off the ground, bleeding from a cut above his left eye, after being decked in a scrum. Cowboys redhead Watts was cautioned, but that was never going to be the end of it. Three minutes later, when they packed down again, the crowd at Leichhardt Oval had that murmuring sense that something was going to happen - and they were right.

Farah and Watts were both sin-binned and the Tigers got the penalty - something the Tigers were particularly happy about, since they admitted afterwards it was them who had started it on that occasion.

“The first scrum, he hit me - I don’t know why, I didn’t do anything to him,” Farah said. “It was a bit of a king hit, really. The refs did nothing about it. Even though the coach would probably advise against it, I wanted a bit of a square-up.”

Farah said that when that next scrum was being packed, the referee told him to make it quick. The referee was talking about the scrum, but Farah obviously had another concept in mind.

“The ref told me to keep it short and sweet - and it was,” Farah said. “People love to see a bit of a fight. We got on with the game and shook hands after the game and that’s footy. No one got seriously hurt. I shook his hand after the game and said ‘why did you hit me?’, and he said ‘I don’t know’. He thought someone elbowed him, but it wasn’t me. I’d packed the scrum and next second I’m getting punched in the head. We won the game, so I’m happy.”

Asked about the lump over his eye, Farah replied: “Hopefully, he’s looking a bit worse.” Watts did look worse. He had lumps over both eyes. In fact, they stretched right across the lower part of his forehead.

Watts said he had not king hit Farah, but was reacting to a blow. “It was a little elbow. I’m not sure if it was Robbie or not, but it came towards me and I just reacted,” he said. Referring to the next scrum, Watts said: “I went to pack in and there was a bit of foul play in the scrum and then it just erupted. I don’t know if it was Robbie or not because there were a fair few of them hitting me. That’s part of footy, it’s all good. What’s on the field stays there.”

Tigers coach Tim Sheens said that had the Tigers not done anything about what had happened to their captain “we don’t deserve to be playing the game”, before adding: “And we got the penalty, so that’s why I’d be happy about it.”


haha i love Sheens response at the end

Don’t mess with those ghosts of Leichhardt

Phil Gould | July 20, 2009

IF YOU haven’t already caught up with the story, the Cowboys were leading 8-0 and seemingly in control of proceedings when their hooker Anthony Watts decided to use Wests Tigers rake Robbie Farah as his own personal punching bag after the ball had long left a scrum.

Memo to Cowboys players - when you visit Leichhardt Oval on a Sunday afternoon it’s a bit like the advice you give your children when you take them to the zoo: “You can go and look at the Tigers, but just don’t rattle their cage. They get very upset.”

When the next scrum packed down only minutes later, the ghosts of Leichhardt Oval and all past players were looking down on the Tigers pack. They gave Farah the nod as if to say: “You know what to do now, my son.” Farah and his mates didn’t let their predecessors down. As soon as this second scrum packed their big boys held the North Queensland big boys aside, so Farah could dance one-on-one with his attacker.

Half a dozen well-directed left hooks later and Watts was on the ground, Farah stood over his fallen rival, the Tigers fans were on their feet, the two bantamweights were sent to the sin bin, and from that point the game was as good as over. The Leichhardt gods nodded their approval, sat back down in their seats, and watched the home side proceed to run away with the contest, 34-14. Social and sporting commentators will now debate the rights and wrongs of these events. Political correctness and the effects these incidents supposedly have on “Little Johnny’s mummy” will no doubt dominate discussions.

My opinion is very simple - IT WAS BLOODY GREAT!

End of story.

The football played on the day gave us a bit of everything. We saw the brilliant, the skilful, the speedy and the tough. We also witnessed the soft and the terrible.

The Cowboys started in a blaze and really had the home team under the pump. The speed of their play-the-balls had the Tigers back-pedalling for most of the opening 20 minutes. The likes of Watts and five-eighth Grant Rovelli looked sharp as they taunted the opposition marker defenders with their footwork and short passing game. However, this was short-lived.

Enter Benji Marshall. The mercurial Tigers playmaker had a hand in five of the next six tries in a demonstration of creativity only he can offer.

The quick hands, the dancing feet, the long and short passes. He used them all.

Somewhere in all this though were the basics of a pretty astute game plan from Tigers coach Tim Sheens. The constant attacking raids aimed at the Cowboys’ right-hand defence were too deliberately orchestrated to be considered mere chance. As a series of decoy runners complemented the vision and awareness of Marshall and his well-timed passes created space for centre Chris Lawrence and winger Taniela Tuiaki to cross in the left-hand corner all but untouched.

Other Marshall touches were less convincing but no less entertaining. I would gladly pay money every week to watch this man at full tilt.

Mind you, the final winning margin will mask a pretty ordinary period of lacklustre footy provided by the Tigers midway through the second half. They had the Cowboys down and at their mercy. The visitors were offering little resistance and looked happy enough to jump back on the next plane out of town. Instead of putting them to the sword and running up a massive number, the Tigers fumbled and bumbled their way around the park, inviting their opponents to get up off the canvas and back into the fight. So poor were the Cowboys they took a fair while to accept the home side’s invitation. But as soon as they had scored to get themselves back in with a chance, Marshall injected himself again to lift his team to a 20-point victory.

The good parts of the Tigers’ game are competitive with the best teams in the NRL. Unfortunately the worst parts of their game are as bad as the bottom teams. It’s these frustratingly poor periods which regularly emerge during their games each week which will hinder their finals aspirations. I still love watching them play though, and so too do the ghosts of Leichhardt Oval. I imagine they went to bed very happy last night.

–-----------------------------------

Im with Gus I loved it!!!

Tigers roar to life to gun down fumbling Cowboys

Andrew Stevenson | July 20, 2009

Tigers 34 Cowboys 14

THE Cowboys made three crucial errors in the first half against Wests Tigers yesterday. Willie Tonga and Manase Manuokafoa both spilt the ball cold in front of their line to hand the Tigers great try-scoring opportunities while hooker Anthony Watts took an axe to the head of one of Leichhardt’s favourite sons, Robbie Farah.

The two handling errors cost the Cowboys the full penalty on the scoreboard but Watts’s forceful engagement with Farah as a scrum became a time tunnel back to the 1970s brought a previously sullen crowd of 18,408 alive and ignited a fire in the belly of the Wests Tigers.

Farah retaliated at the next scrum, the pair were sin-binned and the home side woke up quick smart.

“It sparked us up a little bit,” said Tigers front-rower John Skandalis. “Things like that turn the game, and fortunately for us it got us in motion and we scored some good tries at the back of the game.”

The Tigers had needed something to get them moving, conceding an awful start when the visitors scored as the Leichhardt crowd were still blowing the froth off their cappuccinos. Shane Tronc’s offload started the problem, Watts’s speed exacerbated it and Matt Bowen’s inevitable presence backing up in the middle of the park saw the North Queensland score in 44 seconds.

And they kept their foot on the throttle, making easy yards out of the ruck area and using their size across the park to great effect. Then came the mistakes. Tonga, like Johnathan Thurston backing up from Origin and looking the worse for wear, spilt the ball and, from the scrum, Benji Marshall drifted across field selling dummies as he went, before his speed allowed him to score in the corner, from where he kicked the conversion.

The hookers were sin-binned and the Cowboys’ aggressive approach almost earned a reward when Steve Rapira, who proved a handful all afternoon, all but scored only to be deprived of the ball by impish Tigers fullback Shannon Gallant.

The footballs gods can be cruel. With the ball in hand, John Morris set Beau Ryan free down the right wing and, after a length-of-the-field movement, Chris Lawrence scored on the left-hand side - with the Cowboys defence sufficiently shot that he could touch down in a handy position for Marshall to add the extras for a 12-8 lead.

There were only five minutes left until the break - time enough for Manuokafoa’s fumble. The Tigers, as is their wont, ran the ball on the last tackle and Taniela Tuiki scooted in untouched for a 16-8 lead.

The Tigers began the second half at speed, but also with a huge defensive effort that kept the Cowboys bogged down inside their half. Thurston was struggling to impose himself on the game and was smashed twice getting his kicks away while nippy Tigers half Tim Moltzen played with plenty of enterprise, almost scoring a try in cahoots with centre Blake Ayshford. Last year, the pair - plus bench forward Simon Dwyer - were playing with the kids; yesterday, they all revelled on the big stage.

Only a year older, Gallant also played strongly and, when he grabbed Marshall’s inside ball, the young fullback went toe-to-toe with Bowen and left the Cowboys speedster trailing him to the line to put the home side ahead 20-8 with 30 minutes to play.

Both sides traded dummy-half barges but the Tigers always had the winning line in sight. It was Farah who got to raise his arms in triumph, chasing through his own grubber to score the final try for the 34-14 scoreline.

Tigers coach Tim Sheens praised a team taking seriously the challenge of making something from the last eight games; Cowboys boss Neil Henry was disappointed with some dumb play in defence, particularly when his side came close in the second half.

“Some behaviours out there aren’t acceptable for first grade. You can’t let someone run past you or you pay the price,” Henry said.

Henry seeks consistency away from NQ

Andrew Stevenson | July 20, 2009

THE North Queensland Cowboys know how to win — they just can’t do it often enough this side of the Tropic of Capricorn.

It’s rugby league’s equivalent of the Coriolis effect and, instead of changing the direction wind blows in a cyclone, the Cowboys’ problems when they leave the tropics threaten to send their season down the plughole.

Coach Neil Henry laid the facts on the line with the side playing only three home games out of its remaining seven matches. “If we can’t win a couple of those away games we’re not going to feature in the top four by any means and if we don’t win a few we won’t be in the top eight. So the challenge is ahead of us - we need to find some consistency away from home,” he said.

All sides like to play at home and the further the opposition have to travel the more confident the home boys enter the field of battle. The Cowboys, who haven’t won in Sydney since round 22 in 2007, never looked like shaking their hoodoo yesterday — especially once the Leichhardt Oval crowd roared to life.

Maroons centre Willie Tonga, playing his first game at Leichhardt, was surprised by the noise.

“It’s a lot more vocal than I think I’ve experienced. You can really hear if someone is yelling out your name. Even though you’re trying to block it out, it’s always there,” he said. “You can’t see yourself as a threat in the competition if you can’t win games away. We’ve only won two games away and we’ve got a good record at home. We need to address that really quick.”

Henry said it wasn’t just his team’s problem — an analysis supported by his opponent for the day, former Cowboys coach Tim Sheens.

Still a frequent flyer on the route, Sheens said the trip affected preparation. “Travel and recovery are a huge issue in professional sport because of the amount of effort that goes into each game and the amount of training they do,” he said.

Sheens was adamant teams were continuing to target Farah around the ruck.

“It’s very obvious to me that sides are doing everything they can to take Robbie out of the game,” Sheens said.

It is bloody obvious to me to Tim……Question is what are you going to do about it?..Call Finch and get the Ref’s to open their eyes might be a start…

the media reports are a good read.
the most pleasing thing, walking out of Leichhardt Oval yesterday, besides having the two points, was knowing that when it got tough in the game, wests-tigers went harder and harder and did not back off.
.
great game to watch.

@Jazza:

Don’t mess with those ghosts of Leichhardt

Phil Gould | July 20, 2009

IF YOU haven’t already caught up with the story, the Cowboys were leading 8-0 and seemingly in control of proceedings when their hooker Anthony Watts decided to use Wests Tigers rake Robbie Farah as his own personal punching bag after the ball had long left a scrum.

Memo to Cowboys players - when you visit Leichhardt Oval on a Sunday afternoon it’s a bit like the advice you give your children when you take them to the zoo: “You can go and look at the Tigers, but just don’t rattle their cage. They get very upset.”

When the next scrum packed down only minutes later, the ghosts of Leichhardt Oval and all past players were looking down on the Tigers pack. They gave Farah the nod as if to say: “You know what to do now, my son.” Farah and his mates didn’t let their predecessors down. As soon as this second scrum packed their big boys held the North Queensland big boys aside, so Farah could dance one-on-one with his attacker.

Half a dozen well-directed left hooks later and Watts was on the ground, Farah stood over his fallen rival, the Tigers fans were on their feet, the two bantamweights were sent to the sin bin, and from that point the game was as good as over. The Leichhardt gods nodded their approval, sat back down in their seats, and watched the home side proceed to run away with the contest, 34-14. Social and sporting commentators will now debate the rights and wrongs of these events. Political correctness and the effects these incidents supposedly have on “Little Johnny’s mummy” will no doubt dominate discussions.

My opinion is very simple - IT WAS BLOODY GREAT!

End of story.

Love it. Well written by Gus. 😃

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