Media Reports

Kickoff: 2pm, Sunday 12 June
Venue: Mt Smart Stadium, Aukland
Telecast: Ch9 4PM LIVE
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Media Reports

Post by willow » Sun 12 Jun, 2011 9:59 pm

By Wayne Cousins
12/06/2011 6:08:29 PM


Wests Tigers may have turned their season around at Mt Smart Stadium today following a superb second half comeback.

In an amazing game of rugby league, the Warriors got out to an 18 point lead after 60 minutes before some entertaining and magical play, combined with some desperate defence, saw Wests Tigers win 26-22 to take the vital two competition points. It was a gutsy win after a quick turnaround from Monday night's golden point win over the Knights.

The win moves Wests Tigers to 16 points and in seventh place on the Telstra Premiership ladder.

Head Coach Tim Sheens added Tim Simona to his interchange bench after an impressive NRL debut last Monday night. Simona replaced Alan Schirnack. Beau Ryan came into the starting side to replace the injured Lote Tuqiri.

Wests Tigers opened the scoring in the ninth minute when a great short cut out pass from talented half-back Robert Lui found centre Blake Ayshford to dive over to score. Five-eighth Benji Marshall’s attempt hit the left upright to leave Wests Tigers leading 4-0.

The Warriors had three consecutive sets inside the Wests Tigers quarter but the defence withstood the pressure. Winger Manu Vatuevi looked set to score in the 16th minute but desperate cover defence by opposite winger Beau Ryan saw the giant winger drop the ball in trying to score.

A downfield kick by the Wests Tigers saw Warriors full-back Kevin Locke split two defenders to race up the middle of the field to find support inside in second-rower Feleti Mateo. The ball was spread quickly to the right for winger Krisnan Inu to plant the ball down in the right corner.
Full-back James Maloney failed to convert from the sideline for a 4-4 scoreline after 21 minutes.

A minute later, Wests Tigers lock Chris Heighington was slighty concussed in making a low tackle on Ben Matulino. Heighington got up and continued playing after treatment.

A kick behind the defence by Marshall 25 metres out from the Warriors line saw Inu fumble the ball in-goal for the ball to pop loose for centre Tim Moltzen to dive on. The try was not awarded after it was ruled Moltzen pushed Inu off the ball.

Referee Alan Shortall called on the video referee to rule whether back-rower Liam Fulton had scored in the 28th minute but replays showed he was just short of the line.

A bomb from dummy half saw Vatuvei knock the ball back in-goal where Wests Tigers second-rower Simon Dwyer knocked the loose ball forward before Locke dived on the ball to score. Maloney failed to convert the try to give the Warriors an 8-4 lead after 34 minutes.

The score remained 8-4 to the Warriors at half-time after an entertaining first half.

2nd Half
A bomb directed at Ryan saw Locke get a hand to the ball before it hit Ryan in the head only for the ball to bounce up for Vatuvei to wrestle the ball off full-back Wade McKinnon to score. It was ruled no try in the 44th minute.

Four minutes later, Vatuvei scored out wide after Mateo delivered a ball to his winger to get on the outside of Ryan to score for a 12-4 lead. It came on the back off a 20 metre tap and offload by Mateo who put Locke into open space. Maloney failed to convert the try in the 49th minute.

An offload by Mateo saw Lance Hohaia race downfield before a flick pass behind him saw the ball go to ground and picked up by Andrew Fifita just 10 metres from his tryline in the 51st minute.

Simona entered the field in the 54th minute, replacing Lui, meaning Moltzen moved to half-back.

The Warriors went to a 16-4 lead in the 55th minute when Mateo threw a no look cut out pass to put half-back Shaun Johnson into a gap before he outpaced McKinnon to score out wide. Maloney failed to convert the try.

Four minutes later, a chip kick by Maloney saw Mateo pick the ball up to spread before Vatuvei scored his second try to finish off a brilliant piece of play to give the Warriors a 20-4 lead. Maloney converted his first try for a 22-4 lead after 60 minutes.

A magnificent flick pass from Wests Tigers second-rower Gareth Ellis finished off a 20 metre run on the last tackle, resulting in Marshall crossing the tryline. Marshall converted the try for a 22-10 scoreline after 65 minutes.

McKinnon got Wests Tigers back to 22-14 when he defused a Marshall bomb to race 10 metres to score. Marshall converted the try to leave Wests Tigers trailing 22-16 after 67 minutes.

A 40/20 kick by Marshall a minute later saw Wests Tigers get the scrum feed 20 metres out from the Warriors line. A rushed kick from Robbie Farah saw Inu regather the ball ingoal to get the ball back into play.

A stray pass from Marshall that went back 20 metres back saw Ayshford pick the ball up to split two defenders to race 35 metres before sending an inside pass to Marshall to score near the posts. Marshall converted the try for a 22-22 scoreline after 73 minutes after the Warriors led 22-4.

The video referee was called on to determine whether Ryan had planted the ball down with his right hand after some razzle dazzle play in the lead up to the try from Marshall. The try was awarded to give Wests Tigers a 26-22 lead after 75 minutes. Marshall failed to convert the try from the sideline.

A crossfield bomb in the 78th minute saw winger Mitch Brown spill the ball five metres from his tryline to give the Warriors a scrum feed. Wests Tigers dug deep in defence before Ryan forced an error from the Warriors to give Wests Tigers the scrum feed in the 79th minute.

Wests Tigers slowed the play down with dummy half runs in the final minute to record a memorable victory. Ayshford was named man-of-the-match.

NYC report
Wests Tigers suffered a 30-16 loss to the Warriors at Mt Smart Stadium earlier today.

Tryscorers for Wests Tigers were Jacob Miller, Faleula Finau and Ben Murdoch-Masila. Miller kicked 2 goals from 3 attempts.

Wests Tigers play Melbourne Storm at Leichhardt Oval on Sunday, June 19, at 3pm.

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Post by willow » Sun 12 Jun, 2011 10:03 pm

Marshall roars as Tigers tame Warriors
June 12, 2011 - 7:24PM


He had never beaten the Warriors in Auckland or scored a try against them, but Wests Tigers' superstar Benji Marshall ticked both off his to-do list on Sunday in a stunning 26-22 comeback NRL win.

Marshall sparked a stunning late surge as the Tigers recovered from 22-4 down, with less than 20 minutes remaining, to overwhelm the Warriors with four late tries.

The Kiwi Test skipper had a hand in all four of them - scoring two himself and setting up the others, including the match-winner for Beau Ryan with a basketball pass with just four minutes left.

"It's a big one for me. I haven't won here in Auckland against the Warriors yet - it's something I can take out of it and I hadn't scored a try against the Warriors either," said Marshall, who also added a 40-20 kick during the frantic finish.

"We felt like we were pretty much a part of that game the whole time. To tell you the truth, it felt like we dominated in a lot of facets of the game. We were just letting them out of their half too easy.

"In the end, we hung on and got away with the points."

The Warriors were left ruing the one that got away after scoring three tries in 11 minutes after the restart to turn a slender 8-4 halftime lead into what seemed a match-winning 22-4 advantage.

They hadn't counted on Marshall, however, as he opened the comeback with his first try in his eighth game against the Warriors off a Gareth Ellis offload in the 64th minute.

He then bombed for former Warrior Wade McKinnon to score, before Marshall bagged his second after a big break by Blake Ayshford.

Marshall's conversion tied up the game, but he wasn't done with yet as he found Ryan with an over-the-top pass to complete the revival.

The Warriors paid a heavy price for an off day with the boot for goalkicker James Maloney, who nailed just one of his five conversion attempts.

His four misses matched his total misses for the season heading into the game, having hit 90 per cent of his kicks over the opening half of the campaign.

"Mentally, if you lose it for a little bit, then momentum swings the other the way," Warriors' coach Ivan Cleary said.

"They just had all that possession and were scoring points and sometimes it's hard to stop.

"We just couldn't, but I think there were times in that period we could certainly have stopped it if we had been a little bit more mentally tough."

The Tigers leapfrog the Warriors into sixth spot, the late burst capping a memorable six days for the club following their golden-point win over Newcastle on Monday night.

The defeat was compounded for the Warriors with defensive stalwart Michael Luck leaving the field in the opening half with suspected anterior cruciate ligament damage to his left knee.

Cleary would have taken heart from the efforts of fullback Kevin Locke, second rower Feleti Mateo and rookie halfback Shaun Johnson, who were pivotal in the Warriors' second half onslaught in which giant winger Manu Vatuvei scored a double.

His first, eight minutes after the restart, followed a long break from Locke before he found Mateo who put his winger over.

Johnson then scored after being set free by Mateo on halfway, the second-game halfback stepping past McKinnon on the his way to the line.

Mateo and Johnson were again involved as they set up Vatuvei for his second try, with Maloney's only goal of the match giving the home side an 18-point lead.

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Post by willow » Sun 12 Jun, 2011 10:04 pm

Tigers surge up NRL ladder
Steve Jancetic and Laine Clark
June 12, 2011 - 7:54PM


A dramatic seven days revitalised Wests Tigers NRL premiership hopes with the pre-season fancies performing back-to-back escape acts to surge up to sixth on the ladder.

After pipping Newcastle thanks to a dramatic Robbie Farah golden point field goal on Monday night, it was Benji Marshall's turn to be the hero on Sunday as he engineered a stunning come-from-behind win over the Warriors in Auckland.

Marshall was at his mesmerising best as he pulled the Tigers back from 22-4 down with just 16 minutes remaining to run out 26-22 winners - the Kiwi Test skipper scoring two tries and setting up another two in an amazing performance.

In a day of thrilling comebacks Canberra almost outdid the Tigers as they came from 24-0 down to send their game against Brisbane in extra time, with Broncos halfback Peter Wallace breaking Raiders hearts with a 40 metre golden point field goal.

The win moved the Broncos to 20 competitions points, but they will be looking nervously over their shoulder at a Tigers side which put consecutive wins together for the first time since round three.

Tigers coach Tim Sheens described the victory as one "that can define a season".

"So while you're ticking away and staying in the mix, you're still there," Sheens said.

"You come out of the bye in two weeks time with enough rounds not to have to win eight out of nine or something."

The Tigers started the season as second favourites for the title behind premiers St George Illawarra, but they've struggled for consistency in the wake of a high injury toll.

The Warriors seemed almost powerless to stop them during their barnstorming finish, but Sheens gave the indication there was still plenty to work on.

Asked if there was anyone who could stop the Tigers when they were in that sort of mood, Sheens said: "Plenty, because we'll throw it over the sideline as well.

"That's us, however in saying that we're working harder and harder at making sure we don't shift the ball for the sake of shifting the ball and throw it around for the sake of throwing it around."

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Post by willow » Sun 12 Jun, 2011 10:06 pm

From ABC Grandstand:

Tigers roar late to down Warriors

Updated June 12, 2011 17:02:00

Wests Tigers superstar Benji Marshall orchestrated a stunning fightback as the Warriors conceded four late tries to go down 26-22 at Mt Smart Stadium on Sunday.

The visitors trailed 22-4 after 64 minutes before Marshall came to life, the Tigers pivot scoring two tries, kicking a 40-20 and setting up the match-winner for Beau Ryan to seal a thrilling win.

The Warriors had looked in control after three second-half tries - including a double to giant winger Manu Vatuvei - gave them a comfortable 18-point lead.

But they paid a massive price for an off day with the boot for goalkicker James Maloney, who managed just one from five after coming into the game with a 90 per cent strike rate.

The Tigers had massive problems trying to contain back rower Feleti Mateo, as the home side - who went to the sheds with a slender 8-4 lead - surged ahead following the restart.

A long-range break from full-back Kevin Locke sparked the Warriors' onslaught as he found Mateo in support, the former Parramatta star putting Vatuvei over out wide.

Impressive rookie Shaun Johnson then scored after being set free by Mateo, before the pair again combined to set up Vatuvei for his second try.

At 22-4, the game looked over, but there was a sniff of life when Gareth Ellis off-loaded for Marshall's first try.

The New Zealand Test captain then bombed for Wade McKinnon to cross before centre Blake Ayshford - who had scored the opener in a barnstorming game - went for a long gallop and found Marshall to lock it up with eight minutes left.

Winger Beau Ryan then sealed victory by crossing in the corner off a Marshall pass, the Warriors' disappointment enhanced by a potentially-serious knee injury which forced tackling machine Micheal Luck off at half-time.

"We were confident at half-time, very confident," Tigers coach Tim Sheens said after the match.

"We were unlucky a couple of times in the first half, we were trailing into the wind, came out and for 20 min we didn't seem to do anything right and they came up with some pretty spectacular football and tries.

"I was disappointed with the fact the game had started to get away from us, but there was enough time when we did score, and Marshall's conversion was important, considering young Maloney had a difficult night.

"But once we were... two tries behind, all of a sudden, the momentum changed."

Warriors coach Ivan Cleary bemoaned his side's lack of composure in letting a 22-4 lead slip.

"I gave one message: that we were only three tries ahead. The game can turn pretty quickly and that's exactly what happened," he said.

"I think in their head they probably knew that but in the end we didn't handle it as well as we needed to.

"I can't get past the fact we should have never lost that game.

"Credit to them, they had nothing to lose in that last quarter of the game and came up with some impressive stuff, but we just needed to get a bit of composure, make a couple of defensive plays when it really mattered and we would have got the points, but we just couldn't."

Cleary however refused to lay the blame on goalkicker Maloney for an off-day in front of the posts.

"That can happen sometimes with the kicker. He's kicked well for us on plenty of other occasions - that's the life of a goalkicker, I suppose," he said.

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Post by willow » Mon 13 Jun, 2011 9:24 am

Tigers stop feeling sorry for themselves after Sheens edict
SMH - Steve Kilgallon
June 13, 2011

TIGERS coach Tim Sheens sat his players down, told them to stop worrying about who might be going where next season, and to remember that they were being paid to play football. It seemed to work.

While there's still nothing official about where Bryce Gibbs and Liam Fulton will play next year, that can no longer be used an excuse.

"It [the speculation] has had its effect,'' Sheens said. "But it is about putting it behind you and getting on with it. I know there are guys hurting because they are not there, or there is going to be some issues, but they will play for each other. I know they will play for each other. There are some issues, but they are issues that professional athletes just have to come to terms with.''

His players certainly got the message: "It hasn't affected us at all, we've got on with our jobs,'' centre Blake Ayshford said.

"We've had a talk about it, it's pretty much [done and dusted], we've got our jobs to do on the field,'' offered prop Keith Galloway.

Benji Marshall, who has been around as long as Gibbs and Fulton - all three debuted in 2003 - admitted he was all but resigned to seeing them go. ''When we are as close as we are, it's hard to hear about your mates having to leave,'' Marshall said. "But at the end of the day, the coach knocked it on the head. We get paid to play football. So we have to get on with it.

"If it is a couple of guys' last season, then we are playing for our mates … to send them out on a good note. A lot of us have been together for a long time, and it is hard to see them go.''

Sheens said his team's injury toll was as disruptive as State of Origin call-ups were to the other frontrunners, but while the Tigers wait for Lote Tuqiri, Chris Lawrence and Todd Payten to recuperate, a win like this "can define a season''.

In contrast, Warriors coach Ivan Cleary's future appears less clear-cut than it once did. While the club has moved to play down suggestions Penrith are interested in Cleary, the Herald can confirm that he did field a direct approach from Panthers coaching director Phil Gould a fortnight ago. Gould has long admired Cleary, and not just as a coach, once telling the Herald: "He's the sort of bloke you would let marry your daughter, and there's not too many footballers you could say that about.''

Cleary immediately flagged the interest to the Warriors, who told Cleary they wanted him to stay. But last night, Warriors chief executive Wayne Scurrah told the Herald the club had not begun talks with Cleary about extending his contract beyond its 2013 expiry, and Cleary was "comfortable'' with waiting until the time was right to open talks. "He is committed to us, we're happy with him, and he's happy with us,'' Scurrah said.

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Post by willow » Mon 13 Jun, 2011 9:30 am

Marshall magic sparks Tigers comeback win

Dean Ritchie
From: The Daily Telegraph
June 13, 2011 12:00AM

THE game - and perhaps Wests Tigers' season - was dramatically slipping away at Mt Smart Stadium in Auckland.

Behind 22-4 midway through the second half, they needed a hero. A saviour.

Guess who stepped forward once again? Yep, the one and only Benji Marshall, who showed why he is one of the most brilliant players in rugby league's 103-year history.

Kiwi-born Marshall scored two tries, set up two more and kicked a vital 40-20 to give the Tigers a late and dramatic win over the New Zealand Warriors.

He also added to the drama-charged finish by running back 15m and over his dead-ball line to wind down the clock at fulltime.

It angered the Warriors and a melee erupted.

Until the game, Marshall had not scored a try against the Warriors. His double means he has now scored tries against every NRL club.

"It was a big game for me," Marshall told ABC Radio. "I haven't won here in Auckland against the Warriors. That is something I can take out of the match. I hadn't scored a try against the Warriors. I think I've scored against everyone now."

The Tigers were down and out before Marshall dragged his side from the brink of defeat to pull off a stunning victory.

They scored four times in a brilliant 13-minute period late in the match. The tries came in the 62nd, 66th, 70th and 75th minutes. Marshall also kicked three goals.

Marshall's performance came after he fronted coach Tim Sheens to ask why the club was allowing so many players to walk away after this season.

The decision to let Bryce Gibbs and Andrew Fifita sign with Cronulla has caused angst at Concord between the players and management.

But based on the second half, the Tigers are united.

Having conceded five tries to the Warriors, the momentum change was unbelievable.

"We felt like we were in that game for the whole time," Marshall said. "To tell you the truth, we felt like we dominated in a lot of facets of the game."

The victory followed a golden point win last Monday night.

Tigers centre Blake Ayshford was sensational and is fast maturing into a fine young centre.

"It is pretty easy when you are playing outside Benji and the two Robbies (Farah and Lui)," Ayshford said.

"The second half was good and we came out really strong. We thought we had them on the ropes late in the first half and we snuck in. As long as we get the two points, we are happy."

The Warriors were shattered to have squandered the two points. But when the Tigers roar into attack mode, they are difficult to halt. And the Warriors found that out the hard way.

"The result was pretty disappointing," Warriors fullback Kevin Locke said.

"We slacked off a little bit in the second half and the Tigers made the most of it.

"The Tigers worked us around the park and we had a few bad reads in defence."

The Warriors' James Maloney missed four kicks at goal, which hurt his side's chances.

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Post by Blackpearl » Mon 13 Jun, 2011 12:06 pm ... 6073853931

worth a quick look again. ellis flick is a gem thats for sure
I dislike sowfs immensely

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Post by Flippedy » Mon 13 Jun, 2011 4:52 pm

Couple of interesting articles there. Firstly, I never thought a Daily Telegraph journalist would give us such a good wrap! And secondly, I'm so glad to hear that the players have finally aired their grievances with the coach about all this player movement stuff and are desiring to move on. Hopefully, the boys will now concentrate on playing their skins out for each other, every week, and send their departing mates out as premiership winners! :sign:
Sooner or later, next year has to be this year - Ricksen

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