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Kickoff: 7:30pm, Saturday 26 March
Venue: Campbelltown Stadium
Telecast: FOX Sports 2
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Post by willow » Sat 26 Mar, 2011 11:40 pm

Injuries cruel Tigers win
March 26, 2011 - 10:26PM

Tigers 34 Raiders 24

Potentially serious injuries to Chris Lawrence and Lote Tuqiri took the gloss off a Benji Marshall masterclass as Wests Tigers flexed their NRL premiership muscle with a 34-24 win over Canberra on Saturday.

MATCH STATS

Marshall put on a show for the Campbelltown Stadium faithful as he set up three of his side's six tries, adding a 40-20 to boot in a simply brilliant display as the Raiders slumped to back-to-back losses. But the Tigers face the prospect of being without their left edge for an extended period, with the club saying Tuqiri suffered a suspected broken forearm and Lawrence a hip injury which left him writhing on the ground in pain before he was stretchered from the field.

While the Tigers are left counting the cost of their win, the Raiders are searching for answers with their round one win over Cronulla a distant memory.

Veteran recruit Matt Orford endured a night he'd rather forget, his one bright spot being a long run downfield before finding Blake Ferguson who completed his hat-trick two minutes from fulltime. But the outcome had long been decided by that point.

Already comfortable 18-4 leaders when Tuqiri left the field in the 50th minute, the Tigers went on with the job in the second stanza, with three tries in the space of 13 minutes nullifying a potential Raiders fightback.

Chris Heighington started the rot as he brushed through some soft defence in the 56th minute before a Marshall cut-out pass found Blake Ayshford all alone out wide three minutes later. When Andrew Fifita ran 40 metres - which included a brilliant fend on late inclusion Josh Dugan - to make it 34-10, the Tigers were on a roll before their momentum came to a grinding halt with Lawrence's ugly departure when he fell awkwardly in a tackle.

Ferguson scored his second for the night with a trademark freakish touchdown while Dugan capped his first game of the NRL season with a late four-pointer.

It was all Marshall early as he showed brilliant hands to set up Lawrence and Matt Utai for first half tries, halfback Robert Lui getting the other with a clever 'show and go' move.

Lawrence was rushed by ambulance to nearby Campbelltown hospital with his hip still dislocated, Tigers coach Tim Sheens revealing the Test representative was still in a large amount of pain despite heavy sedation.

‘‘It’s still dislocated and they’re taking him to the hospital, they’ll need to get him under general anesthetic to be able to manipulate it back,’’ Sheens said.

‘‘It’s very disappointing for the kid and the team to lose our left edge ... but the players have got to come to grips with understanding we’ve got another game next week.’’

Asked when Lawrence would likely get back on the field, Sheens said: ‘‘I’ve seen two or three in my time and they’ve all come back, he’ll be back this season.

‘‘When is hard to say, it will depend on the amount of damage done.’’

Tuqiri revealed he suffered the break to his radius late in the first half, but didn’t think much of the injury at the time.‘‘I thought I’d be OK, I thought it was a bit of a knock that would go away quite quickly,’’ Tuqiri said.

‘‘The first tackle in that second half I got a knock on it again and it was just killer pain again.’’

WESTS TIGERS 34 (B Ayshford A Fifita C Heighington C Lawrence R Lui M Utai tries B Marshall 5 goals) bt CANBERRA 24 (B Ferguson 3 J Dugan D Vidot tries J Croker 2 goals) at Campbelltown Sports Stadium. Referee: Jason Robinson, Chris James. Crowd: 14,091.


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Post by willow » Sat 26 Mar, 2011 11:42 pm

Injuries cruel Tigers' triumph - ABC Grandstand

Updated March 26, 2011 22:46:00

Lawrence was later sedated and taken to hospital with his hip still dislocated.

Chris Lawrence was rushed by ambulance to Campbelltown Hospital with his right hip still dislocated as a shocking night of injuries took the gloss off Wests Tigers' 34-24 win over Canberra on Saturday night.

In dramatic scenes outside a sombre Tigers dressing room, a heavily-sedated Lawrence was taken away by ambulance officers with his family by his side - the Test centre's NRL season now in doubt just days after signing a new five-year deal with the club.

His ugly injury - which occurred with just six minutes left on the clock as he twisted awkwardly under the weight of a two-man tackle - was compounded by a suspected broken arm suffered by left-edge team-mate Lote Tuqiri.

The comfortable win was almost forgotten in a dressing room which looked more like the Tigers were the losing side.

"It's still dislocated and they're taking him to the hospital, they'll need to get him under general anaesthetic to be able to manipulate it back," coach Tim Sheens said of Lawrence.

"It's very disappointing for the kid and the team to lose our left edge ... but the players have got to come to grips with understanding we've got another game next week."

Asked when Lawrence would likely get back on the field, Sheens said: "I've seen two or three in my time and they've all come back, he'll be back this season.

"When is hard to say, it will depend on the amount of damage done."

While disappointed, Sheens excused his troops for allowing the Raiders to add some respectability to the scoreline late in the game, their 34-10 lead more indicative of the home side's dominance.

"I noticed when Chris went off it really had an impact on the players," skipper Robbie Farah said.

"He was in a fair bit of pain and the boys were pretty worried.

"I think instead of closing out the game we had our minds elsewhere."

Tuqiri revealed he suffered the break to his radius late in the first half, but did not think much of the injury at the time.

"I thought I'd be OK, I thought it was a bit of a knock that would go away quite quickly," Tuqiri said.

"The first tackle in that second half I got a knock on it again and it was just killer pain again."

Around the injuries Benji Marshall delivered a masterclass, setting up three of his side's six tries as the Raiders slumped to back-to-back losses.

With the game gone the Raiders came home with a wet sail as Blake Ferguson completed a hat-trick, including a stunning 90-metre run to the line, their round one win over Cronulla but a distant memory.

Veteran recruit Matt Orford endured a night he would rather forget with some costly errors, while Josh Dugan capped his return from a calf complaint with a late four-pointer.

Raiders coach David Furner slammed his side over its inability to hang on to the ball, admitting the final scoreline did not reflect the Tigers' superiority.

"It did flatter us a bit the scoreboard," Furner said.

"We've got to build on pressure and our last plays, they're a side that you have to play at their end of the field."

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Post by willow » Sat 26 Mar, 2011 11:44 pm

Injuries to Chris Lawrence and Lote Tuqiri cruel Wests Tigers win over the Canberra Raiders

* Josh Massoud
* From: The Daily Telegraph
* March 26, 2011 9:47PM

WESTS Tigers paid an extraordinary price for their win against Canberra last night, with internationals Lote Tuqiri and Chris Lawrence set to miss a large chunk of the season with serious injuries.

Tuqiri left the field in the 50th minute with a suspected broken right forearm while Lawrence was taken off on a stretcher six minutes from time amid fears he dislocated his hip.

It overshadowed their side's entertaining six-try romp over a sadly misfiring Raiders outfit, which only salvaged respectability with three late tries.

Tuqiri and Lawrence join a bulging casualty ward that includes Gareth Ellis (ankle), Bryce Gibbs (knee), Liam Fulton (shoulder) and Beau Ryan (groin).

But on the evidence of last night's display, they still have plenty of resolve and razzle-dazzle to call upon.

Star five-eighth Benji Marshall was prominent, laying on three four-pointers and landing a 40-20, while prop Andrew Fifita scored a rare 40m solo try.

Abysmal for most of the night, the Raiders stormed home with two strikes to Blake Ferguson that sealed his first hat-trick in the top grade and a Josh Dugan touchdown.

But the Raiders were outclassed, with veteran half Matt Orford turning in a below-par performance.

Marshall laid on the Tigers' first two tries, before halves partner Robert Lui darted over to give the hosts a commanding 16-4 lead at the break.

Despite the return of Josh Dugan at fullback, Canberra looked anything but on a high in the opening half as they regularly gave Wests ideal field position with elementary errors in their own half.

The rot set in after eight minutes, when winger Daniel Vidot spilled a towering Robbie Farah bomb just metres from Canberra's line.

From the scrum, Marshall drifted to the left and drew the defence inside with a sly fake flick to Tuqiri. He then capitalised on the space outside to send Lawrence across.

Marshall also had the decisive hand in Canberra's 15th-minute reply, racing up to leave Vidot unmarked.

But after having the ball for 22 straight tackles, the Tigers struck thanks to Marshall's second wave of the wand.

This time he skipped to the right before sending a precise cut-out ball that sent Matt Utai over for his first try in Tigers stripes on 25 minutes.

Canberra cracked again just four minutes from the break as Lui crossed.

A Marshall penalty goal five minutes after the resumption pushed Wests' lead beyond two converted tries but the Raiders stayed in touch through a slashing 90m solo try to Ferguson.

But the revival was shortlived as Wests roared back with two quickfire tries.

The first came in soft fashion on 57 minutes when 250-game prop Todd Payten shovelled the ball to Chris Heighington, who bulldozed over.

On the next set, Wests crossed with Blake Ayshord's second try, with Marshall again prominent in the lead-up. But the Kiwi blotted his copybook by missing both conversions, including an embarrassing mullygrubber after kicking the ground.

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Post by Spartan117 » Sat 26 Mar, 2011 11:56 pm

UTT - Up The Tigers

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Post by willow » Sun 27 Mar, 2011 12:41 am

One winner, but both teams are still top tips for finals
Phil Gould
March 27, 2011

My pre-season forecasts had the Wests Tigers and Raiders finishing in the top two positions on the premiership ladder, so I was keen to cast an eye over their clash last night. I'm happy with my prediction. And if by some miracle these sides do play each other in the grand final, I reckon all rugby league fans will be very happy with the kind of game they could produce.

Unlike a lot of teams in the NRL, the Tigers and Raiders keep you watching. The speed, skill and creativity in both sides are obvious. However, it is the willingness of these two teams to use these assets that sets them apart. Both teams play free of inhibition and unrestrained by fear of failure. The unpredictability means you really can't look away.

Last night the Tigers proved far too strong for Canberra but I wouldn't read a lot into it if you want to tip a winner the next time these two teams meet. I see great promise in this Raiders team. Their time will come. I'm not giving up on them.

They got themselves into a bit of a pickle last night and panicked their way into the doldrums. However, there were flashes of brilliance. The solo 80-metre try by winger Blake Ferguson was breathtaking. If you haven't seen it yet, catch a replay. He scored two more for good measure and both showed his class. Not many players in the game would have scored them.

If the Raiders learn from bad experiences like last night, they will hurt a few opponents themselves. Remember they still have Terry Campese to return later in the season. He will make a huge difference to their potency.

The Tigers set up this victory with a sparkling first 40 minutes. It was perfect for them. Playing at Campbelltown in front of a parochial home crowd, the Tigers were gifted a lion's share of possession in the first period. If you give the Tigers that much ball they will hurt you.

Canberra came up with 10 errors and 17 missed tackles in the first half. Not all of this was due to sloppy play. Most of the turnovers and ineffective defence was caused by their opponents. The Tigers attacked with their defence and rattled the visitors into errors. In attack, slick ball movement and nimble footwork always had the Raiders stretched to the limit.

In the first half, the Tigers forwards galloped over the advantage line making more than 600 metres. This compared to less than 400 metres gained by the Raiders. The Tigers forward pack is hard working and very mobile. They can all step, pass and offload the ball. They are easily the most creative and dangerous pack of forwards in attack in the competition.

Experienced men like Keith Galloway, Todd Payten and Chris Heighington set the standard. Youngsters like Simon Dwyer, Aaron Woods and Andrew Fifita have so much potential. It's a nice mix.

The Tigers are going so well, the normally influential hooker and captain Robbie Farah allowed himself to fade into the background and play the service role. He will come to life when needed. It's a real sign of maturity that he is allowing others to shine. Great leadership.

Given this dominance of possession and field position, the Tigers' maestro Benji Marshall stepped up and converted their advantage into points. Benji was at his mesmerising best. When he gets time and space to manoeuvre he petrifies defenders.

His sleight of hand to produce the opening try for Chris Lawrence in the left-hand corner was pretty to watch. For good measure he produced an even better magic trick to send Matt Utai over in the right-hand corner without a hand being laid upon him.

There was more of the same from Benji in the second half, including a booming 40/20 that sent the home crowd into a frenzy.

I like the attacking structures of the Tigers. They have just about removed the boring second-man play from their repertoire and many other teams in the NRL would be better if they got rid of this play, too.

The second-man play is the most overused and poorly executed play in the game. The Tigers have their playmakers drifting across the field with potential ball receivers inside and out. This allows them the option to pass early, late, or dummy and take on the line.

Both Marshall and halfback Robert Lui are also prepared to run straight at a retreating defence.

The thing I liked most about the Tigers was their ruthless attitude when they knew they had the Raiders beaten. On the negative side, serious injuries to Lawrence and Lote Tuqiri will have put a dampener on their post-match celebrations. Sometimes this great game just isn't fair.

Let's hope the football gods are fair and give us the Tigers and the Raiders playing against each other in a big match come finals time.


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Post by biggest tigers fan » Sun 27 Mar, 2011 12:46 am

From nrl.com
Chris Lawrence was rushed by ambulance to Campbelltown Hospital with his right hip still dislocated as a shocking night of injuries took the gloss off Wests Tigers' 34-24 NRL win over Canberra on Saturday night.

In dramatic scenes outside a sombre Tigers dressing room, a heavily-sedated Lawrence was taken away by ambulance officers with his family by his side - the Test centre's NRL season now in doubt just days after signing a new five-year deal with the club.

His ugly injury - which occurred with just six minutes on the clock as he twisted awkwardly under the weight of a two-man tackle - was compounded by a suspected broken arm suffered by left-edge teammate Lote Tuqiri.

The comfortable win was almost forgotten in a dressing room which looked more like the Tigers were the losing side.

"It's still dislocated and they're taking him to the hospital, they'll need to get him under general anaesthetic to be able to manipulate it back," Sheens said of Lawrence.

"It's very disappointing for the kid and the team to lose our left edge ... but the players have got to come to grips with understanding we've got another game next week."

Asked when Lawrence would likely get back on the field, Sheens said: "I've seen two or three in my time and they've all come back, he'll be back this season.

"When is hard to say, it will depend on the amount of damage done."

While disappointed, Sheens excused his troops for allowing the Raiders to add some respectability to the scoreline late in the game, their 34-10 lead more indicative of the home side's dominance.

"I noticed when Chris went off it really had an impact on the players," skipper Robbie Farah said.

"He was in a fair bit of pain and the boys were pretty worried.

"I think instead of closing out the game we had our minds elsewhere."

Tuqiri revealed he suffered the break to his radius late in the first half, but didn't think much of the injury at the time.

"I thought I'd be okay, I thought it was a bit of a knock that would go away quite quickly," Tuqiri said.

"The first tackle in that second half I got a knock on it again and it was just killer pain again."

Around the injuries Benji Marshall delivered a masterclass, setting up three of his side's six tries as the Raiders slumped to back-to-back losses.

With the game gone the Raiders came home with a wet sail as Blake Ferguson completed a hat-trick, including a stunning 90-metre run to the line, their round one win over Cronulla but a distant memory.

Veteran recruit Matt Orford endured a night he'd rather forget with some costly errors, while Josh Dugan capped his return from a calf complaint with a late four-pointer.

Raiders coach David Furner slammed his side over their inability to hang on to the ball, admitting the final scoreline didn't reflect the Tigers' superiority.

"It did flatter us a bit the scoreboard," Furner said.

"We've got to build on pressure and our last plays, they're a side that you have to play at their end of the field."
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Post by fergiefurr » Sun 27 Mar, 2011 12:49 am

watching farah on the media conference he nearly goes to tears when talking about lawrence, its obvious they are very worried about him

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Post by happy tiger » Sun 27 Mar, 2011 12:59 am

fergiefurr wrote:watching farah on the media conference he nearly goes to tears when talking about lawrence, its obvious they are very worried about him
Bad injuries on the field can really shake you up Can remember when only 15-16 in game and seeing a young fella go down with a neck injury and had no feeling in arms (he was ok in end). Reminds you of your mortality I guess Reason I think we leaked late points as well

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Post by tigerbenji » Sun 27 Mar, 2011 8:41 am

This team will keep going even with all these injuries, they seem to play for each other & have a ton of guts.

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Post by mike » Sun 27 Mar, 2011 10:01 am

fergiefurr wrote:watching farah on the media conference he nearly goes to tears when talking about lawrence, its obvious they are very worried about him
An indication of how close the team is.
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