Jeff Dickinson-Fox reviews the campaign which saw Melbourne Storm crowned premiers in 2017.
2 days ago
The Dragons have just notched up one of the most dominant and controlled performances of the year defeating the West Tigers 50 zip at Oki Jubilee Stadium this afternoon.
St George Illawarra Dragons were always on the mark from kick off playing the game inside the Tigers' half, spreading the ball wide through halves Trent Barrett and Matthew Head at every opportunity.
Wests Tigers had no answers from the first minute as they were unable to advance forward due to some brutal defence and they struggled to contain the Dragons much bigger and much faster backs as they broke the line continually all day.
At the half-time, the Dragons were leading by 22 points to nil and not a lot changed in the second half.
The Tigers had more try scoring opportunities but simply weren?t able to go over the chalk as the Dragons created more havoc in their territory.
When the St George forwards tired, their young bench took over the game.
We?ve seen the Dragons at full strength before but the injuries usually get the better of their big name stars, can they continue this form at the SCG? Time will tell.
One thing is for sure, Tim Sheens' fairytale run is over.
Scorers: DRAGONS 50 Tries: Gasnier 4, Cooper, Sims, Creagh, Young, Riddell Goals: Head 7/9 defeated WESTS TIGERS 0 Tries: Goals:
By the clock: Late changes for the Tigers as Nick Graham replaces Scott Sattler, Pat Richards replaces Daniel Fitzhenry & Michael Buettner makes his comeback on the bench. Oki Jubilee Stadium is packed to it's rafters.
0 min: Tigers kickoff
1 min: News - Mark Gasnier drops the ball from the kickoff.
2 min: News - Brett Hodgson puts in a grubber kick into the in goal area, Jason Moodie fumbles the ball according to the video ref.
4 min: News - Matthew Head puts up a banana kick, Tigers fullback Brett Hodgson misses the ball but it's cleaned up by Darren Senter.
11 min: Try - Dragons. Following some nice lead up work by St George Matthew Head flicks up a ball to Mark Gasnier who powers over the tryline with three Tigers defenders holding onto him. Matthew Head converts. 6-0 Dragons
15 min: News - The Dragons come inches from scoring after Matthew Head is penalised for not correctly playing the ball with his feet, replays show a Tigers player hand is all over the ball.
20 min: News - The Tigers have had little territory or possession in the early stages of this match, The Dragons have been unlucky not to have scored more.
21 min: Try - Dragons. The Dragons are putting the pressure on the Tigers on attack as the set up Matt Cooper in the corner. Heads conversion attempt goes wide. 10-0 Dragons
27 min: Try - Dragons. A superb individual try by Mark Gasnier as his foot work deceives the Tigers defenders. Head converts. 16-0 Dragons
31 min: Try - Dragons. An excellent grubber kick by Matthew Head sets up a rampaging Ashton Sims as he pounces on the ball to score. Head converts. This is a thrashing! 22-0 Dragons
35 min: News - Trent Barrett kicks a 40/20. Everything is going right for St George-Illawarra.
37 min: News - The Tigers show a glimpse of attacking brilliance for the first time today.
38 min: News - Jason Moodie comes oh so close to scoring a try but the Dragons defence covered him up well.
Halftime: Puff the magic dragon must be crying tears of joy over this dominant first half display by St George - Illawarra. The West Tigers simply have no answers thus far. Dragons are leading at halftime 22-0.
Completions - Dragons: 21/25 Tigers: 11/16 Line Breaks - Dragons: 3 Tigers: 0 Mistackles - Dragons: 3 Tigers: 16 Offloads - Dragons: 4 Tigers: 5 Errors - Dragons: 4 Tigers: 5 Possession - Dragons: 61% Tigers: 39%
40 min: Dragons kickoff
44 min: Try - Dragons. After Justin Poore made a 60 metre bust the Dragons simply spread it out wide to set up Mark Gasnier for his third try. Head converts. 28-0 Dragons
49 min: Try - Dragons. Matthew Head puts up a kick, Brett Hodgson makes a rare mistake and the ball simply bounces up for Ben Creagh to score. Head converts. 34-0 Dragons
52 min: News - Three sets of six in a row and the Tigers have no result. Great defence by the Dragons.
56 min: Try - Dragons. Mark Gasnier darts out of dummy half and steps out of a tackle to score. Head converts. 40-0 Dragons
60 min: News - Forty zip and counting. This a superb display by St George - Illawarra side and they don't look like slowing down.
65 min: Try - Dragons. There is nobody home for the tigers, Dean Young runs over 40 metres to score after Brett Hodgson handed the ball over on the last tackle. Head converts. 46-0 Dragons
69 min: News - Trent Barrett sets up Lance Thompson into open but the pass is ruled forward by referee Sean Hampstead.
72 min: News - Jason Moodie is in the clear but Bronson Harrisons pass to him misses Moodie by a country mile.
74 min: News - Trent Barrett throws an offload in the tackle but Matthew Head knocks it on with nobody in front of him.
77 min: News - Try saving tackle by the Tigers stopping Ben Creagh close to the line.
79 min: Try - Dragons. Mark Riddell runs straight through some weak Tigers defence to score in the dying seconds. Heads conversion attempt goes wide.
Excellent display by St George - Illawarra, the Tigers never had a chance. 50 - 0 Dragons win.
Completions - Dragons: 35/46 Tigers: 26/35 Line Breaks - Dragons: 8 Tigers: 0 Mistackles - Dragons: 9 Tigers: 33 Offloads - Dragons: 24 Tigers: 7 Errors - Dragons: 13 Tigers: 10 Possession - Dragons: 55% Tigers: 45%
----------------------------------------- Leagueunlimited.com players of the match: 3 - M Gasnier (Dragons) 2 - D Young (Dragons) 1 - M Head (Dragons) -----------------------------------------