Monday, 06 June 2005 In Premier League Western Suburbs were up against the Knights who were sitting in equal third position on the ladder, however the Magpies were looking to follow on recent good form after last weeks win against the Rabbitohs. The result showed however that Wests struggle to compete with the quality sides of the competition and their season is hanging by a thread. To add to the misery the news for Wests just gets worse with chief play maker Ben Reynolds suffering a potentially season ending injury.
The big forwards from both sides dominated play in early stages, however the Knights were the first to score and with the conversion they led 6 ? 0. The Magpies key player, half Ben eynolds suffered a serious injury during the phase of play leading up to this try which forced him to leave the field. With less than 10 minutes gone on the clock, the injury was a major blow for Wests losing their onfield general.
The backline was reshuffled, forcing a number of players out of their normal positions. The resumption of play developed into an arm wrestle before half and captain Isaac De Gois made several incisive runs from dummy half and when inside the Knights 20 meter line, he passed the ball inside to hard running prop Siikeaha Teaupa who scored under the black dot. The extras were added by Ben Roberts, levelling the score at 6 all.
In an all to familiar scene to the teams supporters the Magpies failed to control the football and allowing the Knights to attack our line and in the closing stages of the first half. They scored another converted try taking them to the break leading 12 ? 6.
The coach Steve Georgallis emphasized ball control as the key area for improvement in the second half.
In the opening minutes of the resumption in play, the Knights again scored a converted try putting them ahead 18 - 6.
The Magpies battled on hard; however with the absence of Reynolds, they lost direction. Ray Cashmere continued his impressive individual form with several strong runs and hard hitting defence leading up to De Gois scoring a fine try. With the conversion by Roberts, the lead was reduced to 6 points. The Knights applied the pressure from the restart and an error from the Magpies allowed them to score a converted try taking them ahead 24 ? 12.
To their credit, Wests continued pushing forward which saw centre Aaron Mercer evade several attempted tackles to Score out wide. The conversion attempt was unsuccessful and the lead was reduced to 24 ? 16.
The Knights then took control of the game and scored two unanswered converted tries to put the game beyond reach at 36 ? 16. The Magpies forced an error from the Knights from the kick off and Roberts capitalized with a converted consolation try. But in the last few minutes, the Knights scored another converted try, taking the final score to 42 ? 22 in favor of the home side.
Wests were always going to have difficulty taking the two points against the Knights in front of their home crowd, but the task was made near impossible once Ben Reynolds was forced from the field. He controls the Magpies attack and his fine kicking game was sorely missed.
Best for the Magpies - Ray CASHMERE and Isaac De GOIS.
Scorers for the Magpies ? Siikeaha TEAUPA 1 try, Isaac De GOIS 1 try Aaron MERCER 1 try and Ben ROBERTS 1 try and 3 goals.
? The Magpies are at Campbelltown Stadium for their round 14 match against Canterbury Bulldogs on Friday 10 June 2005. Kick off 5.30pm.
Scoreline; 4-0 Try Maddison for Knights 6-0 Goal Campbell for Knights 6-4 Try Teaupa for Magpies 6-6 Goal Roberts for Magpies 10-6 Try Tighe for Knights 12-6 Goal Campbell for Knights 16-6 Try Royal for Knights 18-6 Goal Campbell for Knights 18-10 Try De Gois for Magpies 18-12 Goal Roberts for Magpies 22-12 Try Hinton for Knights 24-12 Goal Campbell for Knights 24-16 Try Mercer for Magpies 28-16 Try Hancock for Knights 30-16 Goal Campbell for Knights 34-16 Try Hancock for Knights 36-16 Goal Campbell for Knights 36-20 Try Roberts for Magpies 36-22 Goal Roberts for Magpies 40-22 Try Campbell for Knights 42-22 Goal Campbell for Knights