80:00
Sat 6 September 2014
Leichhardt Oval - Crowd: 5112

Second Half Blitz Sees Tigers Beat Sharks

Although they went into the sheds 10-4 down at halftime the Tigers looked the far more interested and energetic side in the second half and will be the happier side heading into Mad Monday.

The home side, through tries to Bodene Thompson (2), Blake Austin, Curtis Sironen and Mitch Moses had far too much for a Sharks side clearly looking to 2015 and beyond.

In what was a scrappy match played in front of just over 5,000 fans on a wet and windy Sydney Saturday afternoon, the game failed to live up to any great heights. The fact the game ended with a knockon was probably a fair summation of the game as a whole.

However it will be the young Tigers who will likely send Mick Potter out with a win. The Tigers, who have finally settled on a board, will have big decisions to make in the coming weeks, and it looks as though despite today's win, Potter has coached his last game at the joint-venture club.

LU Man of the match Blake Austin left the field early with a lower leg injury, however before doing so scored the try of the match, running 90 metres after a misguided pass from Sharks youngster Valentine Holmes off a bomb.

Although the Tigers took the points today, the Sharks will confident they have found a long-term first graded in the aforementioned Holmes, who crossed for two first half tries, and looked dangerous at times throughout the 80 minutes.


There won't be too many fans of either side who will be unhappy to hear the final whistle today, however it will be the Tigers who can celebrate tonight thanks to today's win.


Match Details
Wests Tigers 26 Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks 10
Venue: Leichhardt Oval
Crowd: 5016
Halftime Score: Wests Tigers 4 Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks 10

LeagueUnlimited.com Players of the Match:
3 points - Blake Austin
2 points - Michael Gordon
1 point - Mitchell Moses

WESTS TIGERS (26)
Tries: Mitchell Moses, Blake Austin, Bodene Thompson (2), Curtis Sironen
Field Goals:
Conversions: Blake Austin (2/4), Curtis Sironen (1/1)
Penalty Goals:

CRONULLA-SUTHERLAND SHARKS (10)
Tries: Valentine Holmes (2)
Field Goals:
Conversions: Michael Gordon (1/2)
Penalty Goals:


LeagueUnlimited.com Live Commentary

TEAM CHANGES: Tigers: Pat Richards is OUT, but for some better news Luke Brooks is IN, Blake Austin moves to FB in jersey 6, Jy Hitchcox goes to the wing in Jersey 1, Mitchell Moses is in jersey 7 at five-eighth & Luke Brooks is at halfback in jersey 18

TEAM CHANGES: Sharks: One minor change, Pat Politoni starts in jersey 14 with Michael Lichaa dropping to the bench

Welcome to LU's suuuuuuuuuuuper Saturday coverage. The 3 pm kick off sees pride on the line as the Tigers host the Sharks. While the Sharks have the wooden spoon safely in their grasp, it's been an equally disappointing season for the Tigers after such a promising start to the season.

Both sides will be happy when this game, and season, and is done and dusted, as neither will want to remember. For both sides it's about the future, although a win today would at least remind fans of what is to come in 2015 and beyond. The Sharks were brave last week, but can they back it up against what should be a fired up Tigers side? Kick off in 5 minutes

It's wet, it's windy. It's the season's final 3 pm kick off. Here we go. Teams about to run out. Plenty of youth in both sides

Tigers kick off. Sharks with the first use of the ball.

1: Simple set from the Sharks. Great kick from Holdsworth has the Tigers rucking it out from their own 10.

2: Penalty Tigers: Farah makes the most of some attention from Arona. Tigers with the first attacking set of the game

4: A decent set but the Sharks hold firm. Few chances for the Tigers early but not to be. Decent start to this game thus far

5: Tigers will start this stanza in good position. Fresh set, 40 out from their own line. Good defense from the home side

6: Not a good kick from Brooks. Hits Robinson on the chest in the line. Looked promising, but the execution was off. Sharks with the ball inside their own 20

7: UNFORCED ERROR CRONULLA-SUTHERLAND SHARKS
Tinirau Arona makes an unforced error.

Arona loses the ball, Tigers on the attack

8: TRY WESTS TIGERS
Scored by Mitchell Moses. Kick to come.

Try Moses. A clever kick through from Farah, Moses scores out side. Felt like it was coming. Terrible effort from Arona to fall on a lose ball, and the Tigers make the Sharks pay

9: UNSUCCESSFUL CONVERSION WESTS TIGERS
Conversion attempt by Blake Austin unsuccessful.

Austin misses the kick. Tough into the breeze

10: The Tigers let the ball go dead off the kick off. The Sharks will have a chance to hit right back here

11: TRY CRONULLA-SUTHERLAND SHARKS
Scored by Valentine Holmes. Kick to come.

Sharks hit straight back. Beautiful ball from Holdsworth, Holmes has a clear run to the line and scores in the corner.

13: UNSUCCESSFUL CONVERSION CRONULLA-SUTHERLAND SHARKS
Conversion attempt by Michael Gordon unsuccessful.

Gordon misses to the right. Almost identical to Austin's miss. Breeze making it tough for both kickers

13: UNFORCED ERROR CRONULLA-SUTHERLAND SHARKS
Matt Prior makes an unforced error.

Prior loses the ball on the first tackle after the try. Looks familiar ...

14: UNFORCED ERROR WESTS TIGERS
Aaron Woods makes an unforced error.

Woods with the drop ball. Tough conditions

15: Sharks make a beautiful break but the last pass is forward. Where has that been all season?

17: On replay the Sharks move would have come back for a penalty due to obstruction.

18: Sharks pinned on their own line until a strong run from Feki.

18: Forward pass Sharks. Own worst enemies here the visitors, giving the Tigers a great shot here

19: UNFORCED ERROR WESTS TIGERS
Matthew Lodge makes an unforced error.

Lodge drops the ball in a great attacking area. Pressure off

20: Great run Holmes, great ball. Gordon tackles just 15 out. Sharks lose the ball but there is NO chance any of the Tigers were on side

21: Penalty Penalty called from the pocket, no decision given after a knock on from the Sharks. Social media blows up

21: Farah with the settler. Finds touch 5 out from the line. Both sides could do with a rest here

22: Penalty Sharks. Quick tap Politoni. Makes a mountain of metres. Sharks on the attack

23: UNFORCED ERROR CRONULLA-SUTHERLAND SHARKS
Valentine Holmes makes an unforced error.

Pressure off. Holmes loses the ball after a run from dummy half. Great tackle from Austin but that's poor handling

24: UNFORCED ERROR WESTS TIGERS
Robbie Farah makes an unforced error.

Oh dear. Farah loses the ball from the scrum.

24: UNFORCED ERROR CRONULLA-SUTHERLAND SHARKS
Jeff Robson makes an unforced error.

Robson drops the ball. *sigh*

25: Positive: the sun's out

26: Some clever work from Lawrence earns a drop out after a shocking kick from Brooks. Feki forced to kick the ball dead. Well done Lawrence

27: UNFORCED ERROR WESTS TIGERS
Jy Hitchcox makes an unforced error.

Promising play down the left ends up with a knock on. Holmes defended that well to be fair to young Hitchcox

28: Tigers 20 out from their own line with the fresh set

29: Dangerous kick taken by Gordon under the posts almost. Much better set from the Tigers there. Taupau with a great run and offload

30: Penalty Sharks. Good position here

31: Good move to the left for the Sharks. Feki almost scores. Good scramble from the Tigers. Goal line drop out after Lawrence tackled in goal

32: UNFORCED ERROR WESTS TIGERS
Blake Austin makes an unforced error.

Austin knocks the ball on from the kick, Got himself into a good position but loses control. Sharks fresh set 10 out

34: UNFORCED ERROR CRONULLA-SUTHERLAND SHARKS
Tinirau Arona makes an unforced error.

Horrible ball from Robson is lost by Arona. Well defended Tigers, but the Sharks offered very little

35: Penalty Tigers. Late call but looked fair enough. Oh wait, Farah lost that cold

36: Decent set for the Tigers. Sharks end up with the ball 10 out from their own line. Game needs some class

36: Penalty Sharks: dangerous tackle

37: Possible try to the Sharks: Holmes looks to have out jumped Austin to score out side. On field is TRY

37: TRY CRONULLA-SUTHERLAND SHARKS
Scored by Valentine Holmes. Kick to come.

Young Holmes has a second. Great leap from the young winger

38: SUCCESSFUL CONVERSION CRONULLA-SUTHERLAND SHARKS
Conversion attempt by Michael Gordon successful.

Great kick in the conditions. Straight down the middle

39: Possible try to the Sharks. Decision is no try on field. Bomb is high, almost impossible to take. Gordon follows through quickest

39: Blake Austin TRY SAVER!!! Brilliant recovery from the fill in fullback. Boots the ball away from the oncoming Gordon

40: Refs have given a knock on which doesn't do justice to anyone there. Austin try saver, mark it down. Refs saying Gordon knocked it on into Austin's foot.

40: That's half time. 10-4 Sharks lead at the break. Up and down half, to say the least, but there have been more than a few positives there for both sides to keep us interested. Stay tuned for the last 40 of both teams season here in the rain in Sydney.

40: Some good footy played between the mistakes here today. This is a big last 40 for both sides, who won't want to head into the off season with a loss.

40: We're underway in the second half. Tigers with the ball from the kick off. Slight breeze at their backs

41: Good opening set from the home side. Sharks start their set from their goal line

43: Tigers winning the early battle. Their six starts on half way. Early chance Tigers

43: Possibly try to the Tigers. Looks like a knock on, on field ref says NO TRY

43: No try. Knock on Lawrence. Sharks survive

43: UNFORCED ERROR CRONULLA-SUTHERLAND SHARKS
Scott Sorenson makes an unforced error.

Sharks had a roll on there, but lost ball turns momentum

44: Penalty Tigers; fresh set just 30 out. Big chance

45: Possible try to the Tigers from dummy half. On field is NO TRY

45: TRY WESTS TIGERS
Scored by Bodene Thompson. Kick to come.

Try to Thompson who goes over from dummy half. Clever work but horrible defense

46: SUCCESSFUL CONVERSION WESTS TIGERS
Conversion attempt by Blake Austin successful.

We're all square as Austin converts from beside the posts

47: Tigers make a mountain in that set but the kick finds Gordon who makes 25 metres with the return.

48: Michael Lichaa is down, clutching at his knee. Good sportsmanship from Farah there. He fell badly but looks ok

49: TRY WESTS TIGERS
Scored by Blake Austin. Kick to come.

Blake Austin goes 90 metres after a pass from Holmes finds the Tigers fullback off a bomb.

50: UNSUCCESSFUL CONVERSION WESTS TIGERS
Conversion attempt by Blake Austin unsuccessful.

Austin can't convert his own try from the sideline. Tough kick that one. Breeze took it

51: Tigers making plenty of metres. Sharks have clocked off 40 minutes early by the look of it. Tigers look keen

52: Robson's kick finds Austin on the chest. Sharks give away a penalty from the kick return. Mad Monday has started early here

53: Pressure off for the Sharks. Forward pass Brooks. Sharks needed that

55: Sue charges down a kick and Tigers on the attack. Great play Sue

56: TRY WESTS TIGERS
Scored by Curtis Sironen. Kick to come.

Oh dear ... Sironen runs over some horrible defense from the Sharks and puts the ball down. Ayshford might as well have not been there

57: SUCCESSFUL CONVERSION WESTS TIGERS
Conversion attempt by Blake Austin successful.

Nice kick from Austin from out wide. Never looked like missing

57: Marty Taupau with a great run. This is a carve up now

58: Tigers go 100 in the set. Gordon with the ball on his own goal line. Sharks going nowehre

59: Ausin, who's been the Tigers best today, has come from the field. Big blow for the Tigers

59: Sopoaga makes a break and the Sharks are on the attack. Holdsworth is closelined by Paterson. Penalty Sharks

60: Horrible kick from the Sharks, but Brooks over runs it and Licha dives on the ball. On field says TRY

60: No try: Licha off side.

61: Crowd; 5012

61: Tigers with the ball from 10 out. Gordon taken into the touch, Great tackle Paterson

64: Farah grubber well picked up by Prior. Sharks going nowhere with the ball

65: Penalty Sharks: Strange one that one. Hitchcox loses the ball, Paterson picks it up from an off side position

65: UNFORCED ERROR CRONULLA-SUTHERLAND SHARKS
Tupou Sopoaga makes an unforced error.

Sopoaga loses the ball. Pressure off

66: Penalty Tigers: Crusher tackle. Easy out of their own danger area for the Tigers

68: TRY WESTS TIGERS
Scored by Bodene Thompson. Kick to come.

Try Thompson off a Moses kick. Game over I'd imagine. Tigers look keen in the last 40 of their season

69: SUCCESSFUL CONVERSION WESTS TIGERS
Conversion attempt by Curtis Sironen successful.

Sironen from beside the posts. Beautiful kick

70: Short kick off falls to the Tigers. On the attack again

70: Six more to the Tigers. Holdsworth knocked the ball down (or up as it was) in defense

71: UNFORCED ERROR WESTS TIGERS
Luke Brooks makes an unforced error.

Brooks looked in but he drops the ball. Great run

72: UNFORCED ERROR CRONULLA-SUTHERLAND SHARKS
Michael Gordon makes an unforced error.

Gordon knocks on from the chip kick. Tigers ball 20 out from their own line

73: UNFORCED ERROR WESTS TIGERS
Aaron Woods makes an unforced error.

Woods loses the ball trying to play it. Prior tackle looks a little high tho

74: Feki goes almost the length but is taken into touch despite having support inside and out. Sums it up really

76: Gordon makes another break. He's made some metres today the Sharks fb

77: Fine takes the bomb and makes a great run to the 30. Good play

78: Holmes weaving, makes 25 ... loses the ball

78: UNFORCED ERROR CRONULLA-SUTHERLAND SHARKS
Valentine Holmes makes an unforced error.

Great run but the ball is lost

79: Six more Tigers. 10 out. On the attack

80: Not a great end to the set for the Tigers, but the steam is well and truly out of this game. Sharks with the ball 20 out

80: Penalty sharks: pushed off the ball. 2 seconds to go

80: UNFORCED ERROR CRONULLA-SUTHERLAND SHARKS
Ricky Leutele makes an unforced error.

The game ends with a mistake. Probably a fair summation. Season over for both sides, Tigers with the big win

80: Well that's it for the season for the Tigers and the Sharks. Neither will be happy with their season, but there are positives there for both sides. The Tigers head into their Mad Monday to celebrate a big win. Some big decisions to be made over the off season for both teams.

3. Blake Austin

2. Michael Gordon

1. Mitchell Moses