Tigers keep finals hopes alive

The Wests Tigers have beaten the Melbourne Storm 32-18 in a passionate performance at Leichardt Oval.

The Tigers got off to a good start with Brett Hodgson scoring in the 6th minute but moments later his opposite number, Billy Slater returned serve down the other end of the field.

Wests hit the lead again when a sharp cut out ball from Prince put Moody over in the corner but another Melbourne try in the 34th minute looked to have put all of the Tigers good work to waste.

It was up to Mark O?Neill right on half time to charge toward the line and stretch out to score giving the Tigers a 16-12 lead at the break.

The second half didn?t get much better for the Storm as minutes in John Wilson intercepted a Matt Orford pass and sprinted 90 metres to extend the Tigers lead.

Both sides traded tries before the match was turned on its head when Danny Williams was sent from the field for a cheap shot on Mark O?Neill.

The 'king-hit' from Williams reportedly breaking O'Neill's cheekbone - the outcome to be heard next week.

The incident fired up Tigers players and fans alike and when Sattler scored from the base of the scrum, the celebrations started early as the Tigers keep their finals hopes alive for one more week at least.

Leichhardt Oval Referee: Gavin Badger Video Referee: Steve Carrall Touch Judges: Steve Nash, David Abood

Scorers: WESTS TIGERS 32 Tries: Hodgson 2, Moody, O'Neill, Wilson, Sattler Goals: Hodgson 4/6 defeated STORM 18 Tries: Slater 2, Orford Goals: Orford 3/3

By the clock: 0 min: Kick-off!

4th min: NEWS - A good start from both sides with the Tigers in particular muscling up with some strong defence.

6th min: TRY - Tigers. After a good second man play, Scott Sattler put Hodgson in some space and the fullback went over to score. The video ref was asked to check the grounding and gave it the green light. Brett Hodgson converts - Tigers 6-0.

9th min: TRY - Storm. Orford went to the air, Geyer flicked back to Kearney who in turn offloaded to Billy Slater to finish off a good try. Matt Orford converts - 6 all.

13th min: NEWS - The Storm have bombed an opportunity to score another try with a poor pass from Kidwell leading to Geyer knocking on.

17th min: NEWS - Melbourne obviously feel that the Tigers left hand side is a defensive weakness with most of their attacking efforts so far being aimed down that side.

20th min: TRY - Tigers. The Storm were caught short on the right hand side with Scott Prince throwing a big cut out ball on to the chest of Moody to send the winger over to score. Hodgson fails to convert - Tigers 10-0.

24th min: NEWS - John Skandalis has gone from the field after failing to get up from an attempted tackle.

26th min: NEWS - Rain is starting to come down which could change what has been an attacking orientated match until this point.

31st min: NEWS - The Tigers have had the better of possession and territory but a couple of poor kicks have let them down.

32nd min: NEWS - Alex Chan has dropped a sitter on the back of a great Orford break, missed chances like that could come back to haunt the Storm.

34th min: TRY - Storm. Matt Orford chip back on the inside into the arms of Billy Slater and the young fullback bet Hodgson to score. Orford converts - Storm 12-10.

37th min: NEWS - Scott Prince, so vital to the Tigers chances, is having a poor night with the boot.

40th min: TRY - Tigers. Mark O'Neill hit the defensive line at speed and went straight through before stretching out to score under the posts. Hodgson converts - Tigers 16-12.

40th min: HALFTIME - The Tigers defence has been great in the first half and that try right on the break will lift their spirits. The Storm on the other hand have had several chances to score but have only been able to cross the line twice.

HALF TIME STATS Score: Tigers 16 Storm 12 Completion: Tigers 20/22 Storm 15/20 Tackles: Tigers 140 Storm 156 Hitups: Tigers 82 Storm 76 Mistackles: Tigers 7 Storm 14 Mistakes: Tigers 2 Storm 5

41st min: The second half is underway!

42nd min: NEWS - John Skandalis has suffered mild concussion but is expected to return sometime in the second half.

44th min: TRY - Tigers. Matt Orford on the last tackle threw a big cut out ball but it landed in the arms of John Wilson who ran 90 metres to score. Hodgson fails to convert - Tigers 20-12.

49th min: NEWS - The Storm definitely look rattled tonight and to make matters worse, they are yet to win after trailing at halftime this year.

52nd min: NEWS - The Tigers are starting to pull away in the penalty count which is now at 8-4 in their favour as Storm caption Kearney is getting frustrated with the referee.

55th min: TRY - Scott Prince dummied to kick before running the ball and sending Brett Hodgson over to score. Hodgson converts - Tigers 26-12.

60th min: TRY - Storm. Elford came out of the line and created space which Orford took full advantage of as he ran over to score. Orford converts - Tigers 26-18.

61st min: NEWS - The Storm have really upped their intensity on the back of that Orford try.

64th min: SEND OFF - Danny Williams (Storm). Tensions have exploded at Leichardt as Danny Williams knocked Mark O'Neill out cold with the cheap shot of the year.

68th min: NEWS - Emotions are still running high on and off the field on the back of that incident.

71st min: TRY - Scott Sattler ran from the base of the scrum and ran 20 metres to score. Hodgson converts - Tigers 32-18.

76th min: NEWS - The match is getting a little sloppy now as it winds down.

80th min: FULL TIME - It's been a great performance from the Tigers to get their season back on track.

FULL TIME STATS Score: Tigers 32 Storm 18 Completion: Tigers 38/43 Storm 27/37 Tackles: Tigers 268 Storm 317 Hitups: Tigers 169 Storm 155 Mistackles: Tigers 20 Storm 33 Mistakes: Tigers 6 Storm 12

----------------------------------------- Leagueunlimited.com players of the match: 3 - S Sattler (Tigers) 2 - M O'Neill (Tigers) 1 - J Skandalis (Tigers) -----------------------------------------