#ORIGIN | Rick's weekly column looks at whether the dead rubber's worth the hassle - and if it is, w...
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An afternoon where the sun shone brightly and the tries were scored freely, saw the Sydney Roosters get back on the winners list with a 42-28 win in front of 20,327 at Leichhardt Oval.
A minutes silence opened the game, with 20,000 patrons observing a moment of respect for the death of Robbie Farah's mother, Sonia Farah.
The try scoring begun in the 6th minute when Matt Utai judged his run off a stabbing kick from Benji Marshall and ghosted behind Minichiello to make it 4-0 Tigers.
Penalties are paramount in football today with the Roosters earning their first and some deft passing from Nuuausala to Guerra sent the latter over for a try. Anasta opened his goalkicking account to give the Roosters a lead.
After the early surge, the Roosters had quelled the Tigers with their large forwards, punching through the line. Off a Tigers error, Mitchell sends Jared Wearea-Hargreaves steaming over for a 12-4 lead.
Following a rapid five minute period where the Tigers attacked the Roosters line, it was left to a sliding doors moment to reverse the Roosters fortunes. Anthony Minichiello produced the steal of the season from a rampaging Ben Murdoch-Masila who was still in the act of scoring, as Minichiello ran away with the evidence.
Roosters forwards were punching holes at will through the Tigers defense and were rewarded with two tries on the dawn of halftime. First Boyd Cordner pounced on an opportunistic kick from Mitchell to score. He turned provider on the siren when he sent captain Braith Anasta away for a deserved 24-4 lead for the tri colours.
Being daytime allowed both sides to play with freedom from the resumption with the Roosters giving the Tigers a taste of their own medicine with the ball getting plenty of air.
They were rewarded with their fifth try in the 52nd minute when Jake Friend took a dart, sending Lama Tasi over after a great decoy run from Mose Masoe to establish a 24 point break on the home side.
It was a day for the forwards to get their due, with Benji Marshall using a play from the Roosters playbook today, using a short pass to send Keith Galloway away to the delight of one Phil Gould and the Leichhardt faithful.
Their joy was short lived when the Tigers couldn't capitialise on the pressure they built upon the Roosters line. Three tackles later and Jake Friend again was involved sending Mitchell Pearce away. 36-10 and a long road back was confronted the Tigers.
It was another sliding doors moment which left the door ajar for a Tigers comeback, an errant Pearce kick landing for Utai. He tapped quick, ate up the meters and got the Tigers on the roll. Next tackle, Beau Ryan sprinted from dummy half and wasn't caught, the comeback was on.
Everything was working for the Tigers, passes sticking and kicks landing back in their hands. It was a solo effort from Tim Moltzen though which made it 36-22 and set up for a grandstand finish.
Marshall obliged, keeping it alive on last and through the sea of offloads, it found Chris Lawrence for a try in the corner. Marshall was straight as an arrow and suddenly the gap was eight.
Despite the frantic offloading and chances for the Tigers, they were repelled at each opportunity by the Roosters. To finish the day off, like it started, Martin Kennedy added his name to the scorers sheet and Braith Anasta made it a perfect seven from seven, giving the Roosters a 42-28 win.
Wests Tigers 28 were defeated by Sydney Roosters 42
National Rugby League - Round 15 - Sunday June 17, 2012 3:00pm
Venue: Leichhardt Oval
Referee: Ben Cummins and Gavin Badger
Video Referee: Bernard Sutton
Touch Judges: Russell Turner and Steve Carrall
Halftime: Wests Tigers 4 Sydney Roosters 24
Wests Tigers (28)
Tries: Matthew Utai, Keith Galloway, Chris Lawrence, Beau Ryan, Tim Moltzen
Conversions: Benji Marshall (4/5)
Sydney Roosters (42)
Tries: Braith Anasta, Mitchell Pearce, Jared Waerea-Hargreaves, Martin Kennedy, Boyd Cordner, Aiden Guerra, Lama Tasi
Conversions: Braith Anasta (7/7)
LeagueUnlimited.com Live Commentary Welcome to a sun drenched Leichhardt Oval for this afternoon's contest between the Wests Tigers and Sydney Roosters.
Earlier in the Toyota Cup, Sydney Roosters were runaway winners, winning 40 points to 18.
Wests: There is a raft of changes for the Tigers this afternoon. Robbie Farah is out due to the death of his mother replaced by Masada Iosefa also out is Liam Fulton and Curtis Sironen are out replaced by Matt Bell and Blake Ayshford respectively. This forced a reshuffle on the bench with it now being Ben Murdoch-Masila, Joel Reddy, Junior Moors and Tom Humble.
Sydney: There are quite a few positional changes for the Roosters. Anthony Mitchell will start for Jake Friend and Mitchell Aubusson promoted to starting and Aidan Guerra stays in the second row. The bench is now Friend, Cordner, Tasi and Masoe.
Before kick-off, we here at LeagueUnlimited would like to give our deepest condolences to the Farah family after the tragic passing of Robbie's mother, Sonia.
Both teams have made their way out to a picturesque Leichhardt Oval.
Tigers get us underway, here we go!
2 min: Tim Moltzen takes the ball clean but after the good work, he loses it in the play the ball.
3 min: First attacking raid goes unrewarded for the Roosters, Pearce's kick is a touch too deep.
6 min: TRY
Marshall with a kick designed to challenge the fullback, Minichiello seems to have it covered but gets an awkward bounce allowing Matt Utai to ghost in and go in for the opening TRY! Marshall from out wide, hooks it wide.
Wests Tigers 4-0
8 min: Roosters rewarded for keeping the ball alive on last.. shifting it from right to left, Aidan Guerra getting the unlikely kick away forcing a blocker to take a Rooster. Penalty Roosters.
10 min: TRY
The penalty produces points again. Roosters go close through early in the set with Wearea-Hargraves but he's held up. Later it's Frank Paul who shows the skills of a halfback to holding it up, just enough for Guerra to run into the hole and level things. Anasta makes no mistakes with the conversion.
Sydney Roosters 6-4
11 min: Piggyback penalty for the Roosters due to holding on too long in the tackle.
12 min: Adam Henry in his second game, keeps the ball alive getting the Roosters a six again call.
13 min: BANG! Good hit from Lawrence levels a Rooster. Next tackle, Peare puts through a kick which rebounds off a Tiger and into Lawrence's hands but he's offside. More pressure from the Roosters coming.
14 min: More football for the Roosters.. knocked down again by the Tigers.
16 min: TRY
The Tigers crack once again. Anthony Mitchell goes for a quick dart and finds Jared Wearea-Hargreaves charging onto the football, no one was going to stop him that close.. TRY! Anasta with the simple conversion, slots it again.
Sydney Roosters 12-4
17 min: This is concerning for the Tigers, Frank Paul surges through the line again. He left Adam Blair in his wake but also the football as well. Scrum Tigers.
20 min: Tigers fans are baying for a penalty and their calls are answered when Aiden Guerra hangs on too long.
21 min: Very aggressive defense here by the Roosters, Martin Kennedy nailing one of the Tigers. Tigers will get an extra set when a late strip call is made by the referee.
23 min: Marshall opts to run it on last tackle, throwing a cut-out to Tuiqiri who has no choice but to kick. He gets lucky with Moga knocking on. Scrum Tigers.
24 min: Offside is the call and here comes more pressure on the Roosters defensive line.
25 min: WHAT A PLAY! Ben Murdoch-Masila was through and no one was stopping him until Anthony Minichiello produces a remarkable one on one steal to rob the young man. Masila is still trying to put the ball down I believe.
27 min: A towering bomb by Benji Marshall is left for the Tigers to regather but the Roosters hold their line, Minichiello cleaning up the scraps of the second kick.
29 min: Pearce puts Moga away but he's rounded up and thrown into touch. Scrum Tigers.
30 min: Anything you can do, we can do better. From the scrum, the Tigers try a play but they also get introduced to the touchline.
33 min: It's been an entertaining opening half an hour, Roosters and Tigers both having a dig. Mitchell Pearce loses it in an attacking position for the Roosters.
35 min: An error by Masoe gifts the Tigers an attacking opportunity but Blair loses it.
36 min: He follows it with conceding a penalty.
VIDEO REFEREE: Boyd Cordner might have scored, checking if the ball is kicked from the offload.
38 min: TRY
A massive run from Frank Paul sets up an opportunistic TRY for the Roosters. Anthony Mitchell from the offload, see's it falling and gets his foot to the ball allowing Boyd Cordner to dive over for the Roosters third TRY. Anasta from right in front, nails it.
Sydney Roosters 18-4
40 min: TRY Dewsbury Rams (NL1)
That was well worked by the Roosters, offloads and charging runs is killing the Tigers. Pearce sends it inside to Cordner who is in the clear with only Moltzen to beat, he draws him and sends Anasta away for a hammer blow on the stroke of halftime. Anasta converts his own TRY.
Sydney Roosters 24-4
41 min: There is a huge mountain for the Tigers to climb, as they emerge for the second half. They'll get first use of the ball as the Roosters kick-off.. here we go!
45 min: Lovely ball movement from the Tigers but no result for them. Forward pass from Heighington to Tuiqiri.
50 min: The Roosters are doing a Tigers on the home side this afternoon, some lovely attacking passing here. They get an advantageous six again thanks to Henry.
52 min: TRY
Friend goes for a good dart, with both Tasi and Masoe in support. He throws the face ball to Tasi who strolls in untouched and add to the Tigers misery. Anasta makes it five from five.
Sydney Roosters 30-4
53 min: A rare knock on from the Roosters, Tigers will get an attacking set to try to stem the tide.
54 min: Roosters will have to withstand another set, after a Nuuausala forearm to the face of a downed Tiger.
55 min: Roosters are getting antsy here, putting hands and knees in the tackle. They have been spotted by the referee, so he blows another penalty.
57 min: TRY
Marshall takes a leaf from the Roosters playbook today, looking long but going short for Galloway to steam his way over to the delight of Phil Gould. Marshall converts quickly.
Sydney Roosters 30-10
58 min: Momentum is shifting here.. a bomb drops for the Tigers and Marshall toes it through for a dropout.
59 min: Dear, oh dear. Kennedy offside from the dropout, penalty.
60 min: Tigers are throwing the ball like a potato currently.. almost scoring it thrice in one play but somehow the Roosters survive.
62 min: TRY
This is what can happen when you don't score when momentum is in your corner. Jake Friend dummies and finds himself in open pasture, drawing Moltzen and sending Pearce away to quell the Tigers rebellion. Anasta makes it six from six.
Sydney Roosters 36-10
63 min: High tackle on Wearea-Hargreaves by Blair, penalty.
65 min: TRY
Roosters on the attack.. Pearce kicks for his wingers on the left side but it only goes to Utai who is away from the quick and legal 20 metre tap. Next tackle, Ryan is away and no one will catch him! Marshall converts.
Sydney Roosters 36-16
68 min: What a manic passage of play.. TWICE the Tigers were away but the person with the ball doesn't use his support. Roosters claim the kick on last, Anasta is away but throws a pass.. straight to the TIGERS!
69 min: TRY
Tim Moltzen goes all by himself, spotting a gap, stepping and powers over for a TRY! Marshall quickly converts and we might have a grandstand finish in the offing.
Sydney Roosters 36-22
72 min: TRY
It's last tackle.. you've gotta get it away an the Tigers do. Every pass sticks and Lawrence is over in the corner. Marshall is picture perfect from the sideline and there is eight points in it.
Sydney Roosters 36-28
74 min: Huge bomb from Marshall, knocked on from the Roosters. SIX MORE!
75 min: Last tackle, Moltzen goes himself and is through.. HELD UP. Changeover.
76 min: Knock on by the Roosters. Here come the Tigers again.
77 min: KNOCK ON ADAM BLAIR. Roosters should hold on from here.
79 min: Iosefa tries another short pass from dummy half but he only finds Cordner who is away!
79 min: TRY
A fitting way to end an entertaining contest. Mitchell Pearce throws it inside to Kennedy who shrugs off one and scores his second TRY of his career. Anasta makes it seven from seven on the afternoon and everyone needs a lie down.
Sydney Roosters 42-28
80 min: A short kick-off from Marshall doesn't go the distance and Guerra takes the necessary hit-up. FULLTIME!