Lachy MacCorquodale reviews the last game of Round 21 between the Wests Tigers and the Newcastle Knights
Wests Tigers 10
Tries: Brent Naden (52), Asu Kepaoa (61)
Goals: Adam Douiehi (54)
Newcastle Knights 14
Tries: Enari Tuala 2 (5, 17), Tex Hoy (30)
Goals: Jake Clifford (32)
MATCH REPORTEmbed from Getty Images
The Newcastle Knights have held off a late charge from the Wests Tigers to win their first game since early July. It’s been a long time coming for the Knights, but Adam O’Brien and his men finally have something to celebrate after the 14-10 victory.
The Knights started on fire and it looked like they were going to cruise to victory – as they did against the Tigers in Round 2. An early double to Enari Tuala gave the Knights the early lead after they continually drove through the middle of the Tigers’ defence. Anthony Milford was damaging in the opening term, troubling the Tigers’ defence as he created opportunities for his side. However, the Knights came up with plenty of errors in the first half, which was the only thing keeping the Tigers in the game.
A try to Tex Hoy late in the first half gave the Knights a 14-point lead and it looked like it was going to be too much for the Tigers.
Unfortunately for the Knights, the errors continued in the second half, pilling up an incredible 17 errors throughout the match, which allowed the Tigers to come back into the match as they made the most of their opportunities.
The Tigers finally got on the scoreboard in the 52nd minute after a Adam Doueihi bomb was left to bounce, allowing Brent Naden to come flying through, collect the ball, and score next to the posts.
Asu Kepaoa then cut the deficit to four with a nice move on Dane Gagai to score in the left-hand corner.
The Tigers looked better in the second half and for a brief moment they were certain to hunt down the Knights’ lead. However, the Tigers came up with a few errors late in the second half and failed to capitalise on their field position during a tense final 20 minutes.
The Knights and O’Brien let out a collective sigh of relief as the final siren sounded as they secured just their sixth victory of the season – and in doing so prevented the Tigers from leapfrogging them on the table.
PLAYER OF THE YEAR POINTSEmbed from Getty Images
3 pts – Jacob Saifiti (Knights) , 2 pts – Tom Freeburn (Tigers), 1 pt – Adam Douiehi (Tigers)
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