Dragons return to form with ugly win over scrappy Tigers

NRL TelstraPremiership GRAD
Embed from Getty Images
Wests Tigers v St George Illawarra Dragons

It wasn't pretty or convincing, but eased the pressure on the Dragons finals campaign as they scrapped their way to a 20-10 victory at Leichhardt Oval tonight over a Tigers side still fighting for a finals berth.

The Tigers looked more impressive early on in the match, dominating field position and possession, as the Dragons gave away the first 6 penalties. However the Tigers could not get their passes to stick when inside the Dragons red zone.

It wasn't until the 28th minute that the scoreboard moved, when Leilua made a bullocking run, brroke the line, then passed to Mann, whose draw and pass sent Pereira over in the left corner for a good try. Lafai slotted the goal from touch.

Five minutes later the Dragons got a penalty in the Tigers half and opted to kick for the two points, but Lafai hit the uprights and missed.

The second half started woefully for the Dragons halfback Ben Hunt. He dropped the kick-off and from the ensuing scrum, Brooks drifted to the left then hit Lawrence running a sweet straight line at pace and straight past a stationary Hunt to score. Marsters was unable to convert.

After the Dragons gave away a few penalties, Ben Hunt was then sent to the sin bin. Marsters kicked a penalty goal to level the scores.

On the hour, the Dragons received a penalty and Lafai kicked a goal to regain the lead for his side.

As Hunt returned to the field the Dragons had a scrum inside the Tigers 10m. From the scrum, the ball went to Leilua who swatted away a defender and then strolled over for a good try. Lafai converted from almost in front.

Ten minutes later, the match was put beyond doubt when Frizell took a crash ball, running on an angled run back towards the posts and he slammed it down for a strong try. Lafai again converted.

The Tigers scored a consolation try 100 seconds from fulltime when Mbye threw a magnificent long, cut-out ball to Naiqama who strolled over to score in the left corner. Marsters missed the tough conversion.

The Dragons head home to host the Bulldogs at Kogarah on Sunday next round, while the Tigers' last home game is on Thursday when they host Manly at Campbelltown.

Wests Tigers 10 - St George Illawarra Dragons 20

Venue: Leichhardt Oval
Crowd: 18387
Halftime Score: Wests Tigers 0 St George Illawarra Dragons 6

LeagueUnlimited.com Players of the Match:
3 points - Jack de Belin
2 points - Tyson Frizell
1 points - Luciano Leilua

WESTS TIGERS (10)
Tries: Chris Lawrence, Kevin Naiqama
Field Goals:
Conversions: Esan Marsters (0/2)
Penalty Goals: Esan Marsters (1/1)

ST GEORGE ILLAWARRA DRAGONS (20)
Tries: Jordan Pereira, Luciano Leilua, Tyson Frizell
Field Goals:
Conversions: Timoteo Lafai (3/3)
Penalty Goals: Timoteo Lafai (1/2)


See how it happened in our Match Centre