NRL TEAMS - 2021 Round 15
3 days ago | LeagueUnlimited Media
Michael Maguire was heavily criticised during the week for his decision to shift one of the side's few shining lights - Adam Doueihi - away from five-eighth and into the centres.
Yet it could well be a masterstroke after the Wests Tigers lit up Magic Round to run away 36-18 winners over the Newcastle Knights.
Moses Mbye starred in the No. 6 jersey with a few classy touches early while Luke Brooks also looked to have a clear understanding of his role in the team, taking the line on and completing sets with a new-found confidence.
Mbye sparked the opening try of the night when he put Tommy Talau streaming through the middle of the field, racing away to put Brooks over under the posts.
It was a late offload from David Nofoaluma though that was the catalyst of that try.
Nothing was going right for Newcastle as miscommunication between Tex Hoy and Kurt Mann saw James Tamou clean up the scraps on an Adam Doueihi kick.
Brooks then put in a perfect crossfield kick which was batted back by Doueihi with Mbye again there to put Nofoaluma over in the corner.
A penalty against the run of play proved costly for the Tigers as Hymel Hunt capitalised on a few nice touches from Phoenix Crossland on the left edge.
It was a brief moment of joy for the Knights though as Hoy was sent to the sin bin five minutes later for repeat infringements with Doueihi scoring the Tigers' first soon after.
Newcastle almost hit back in extraordinary fashion when Talau flung the ball back towards his own line and into the hands of Starford To'a but replays would show he lost possession.
The Knights did though dodge a bullet earlier in the game when Joey Leilua had his own try disallowed in similar circumstances.
The Tigers headed into the sheds with a 24-4 lead but having run down Canberra last week, Newcastle would have rated their chances with a fair share of possession.
In a big confidence boost Brodie Jones charged over in the opening minutes of the half as Newcastle reduced the deficit to 16.
The Knights though gave themselves little chance of launching a fightback as errors piled up and a Leilua flick put Talau over to extend the Tigers' lead to 22.
Brooks continued his stellar outing with a testing kick that was fumbled by Hoy and Doueihi was on the spot to score his second.
Joe Ofahengaue was later binned for repeated ruck infringements and Jayden Brailey took advantage to stroll through shortly after but it was too late.
Errors continued to cruel Newcastle late before Tyson Frizell surged through off a lovely Connor Watson ball to make the final scoreline 36-18.
The Tigers will look to build on this win next week against the Warriors while the Knights are away to the Cowboys.
Wests Tigers 36 - Newcastle Knights 18
Venue: Suncorp Stadium
Halftime Score: Wests Tigers 24 Newcastle Knights 4
LeagueUnlimited.com Players of the Match:
3 points - Luke Brooks
2 points - Moses Mbye
1 points - Adam Doueihi
WESTS TIGERS (36)
Tries: Luke Brooks, Adam Doueihi (2), James Tamou, David Nofoaluma, Tommy Talau
Conversions: Adam Doueihi (5/6)
Penalty Goals: Adam Doueihi (1/1)
NEWCASTLE KNIGHTS (18)
Tries: Hymel Hunt, Brodie Jones, Jayden Brailey, Tyson Frizell
Conversions: Tex Hoy (1/4)