Saturday, April 21, 2012

Match Report - Round 8 VB NSW Cup - Wests v Norths

The Western Suburbs Magpies travelled to Henson Park to take on the North Sydney Bears in Round 8 of the VB NSW Cup in a double header billed as the Foundation Cup with Newtown taking on Balmain/Ryde-Eastwood in the other game.

The Magpies would have been buoyant after their performance last week against Cronulla whilst the Bears were coming off a loss to Wentworthville but were bolstered by the inclusion of NRL stars Nathan Merritt at fullback and Chris McQueen in the forwards plus the return of NSW Cup regulars Curtis Johnston, Josh Starling and Justin Hunt.. In the end it was the Bears taking honours with a 52-6 scoreline against a lacklasture Magpies outfit who have returned to their old habits after such a promising performance last week.The Magpies were their own worst enermy during the match and the Bears were rarely troubled by the Magpies and it would be fair to say didn't get out of second gear for the entire game. Bears Five/eigth Justin Hunt had a superb day scoring a hatrick of tries and kicking eight goals for a personal tally of 28 points.

The scoring commenced in the 9th minute after Norths received a penalty on their 40 metre line. As the play went downfield,Hunt scored the first of his three tries for the afternoon with a simple step of his left foot ten metres out from the magpies tryline. He conversion attempt was waved away. The Bears were denied a try at the 16 minute mark when a pass five metres from the Magpies tryline was ruled forward.

Nathan Merritt scored at the 25 minute mark after receiving a neat pass on the Magpies 40 metre line and stepped inside the defence to sprint to the tryline. Hunt against missed the conversion attempt for a 8-0 scoreline. Wests poor defence was highlighted when Norths scored at the 28 minute mark when short passes between the halves saw Hunt score his second try with a 40 metre run to the tryline. This time he added the extras and it was now 14-0 in favour of Norths. The Bears scored again in the 33rd minute when awarded a penalty on Wests 40 metre line and a quick tap saw the play advance to the 20 metre line where Bears captain Bennett Leslie accepted a terrific pass from Merritt to score. Hunt converted for a 20-0 scoreline and that remained the score for the rest of the first half.

The Bears were in again 5 minutes into the second half when they decided to run on the last with the ball coming to Souths U20 player Luke Keary who fooled the defence when he feigned to kick on the last but spotted a gap in he defence 15 metres out from Wests tryline which he weaved through to score. Hunt converted and it was 26-0 to the Bears.
The Bears were in again on the 50 minute mark. After receiving consecutive sets of six - first from a penalty and then from a goal line drop out, front rower Joey Matapuku was able to carry defenders over the tryline for a easy four pointer which Hunt turned into six. It was now 32-0 to the Bears and the familiar "here we go again" feeling was being felt by the Magpie fans who turned up.

The Magpies were able to score at the 61st minute mark on the back of three consecutive penalities and having Luke Keary sent to the sinbin when David Fifita scored after a great pass from Steven Rooney as he was falling to the ground and Fifita was able to carry defenders over the line out wide. Fifita converted his own try and it was now 32-6.

From the kick off, Wests made it to the halfway line before a loosing the ball in the play the ball on the fourth tackle. From the scrum win, Norths were eventually able to advance the ball towards the Wests 20 metre line and again ran the ball on the last tackle with back rower Brock Molan crashing over the line at the 66 minute mark. Hunt grabbed the extras for a 38-6 scoreline.

Norths were in again at the 71st minute mark after Wests knocked the ball on from a grubber kick on their own tryline and from the ensuing scrum win, Justin Hunt scored after fooling the defence with a dummy to score under the posts. He converted his own try and it was now 44-6.

Then perhaps the most embarrssing defensive lapse occurred for the Magpies when Brendon McKinnon scooted off from dummy half just inside Bears territory and then stepped inside the fullback to score next to the posts without a hand being laid on him - a 50+ metre run straight through the meat of the Magpies defence with just three minutes left on the clock. Hunt converted and yet another half century had been posted against the Magpies this year.

From the kickoff, Norths were awarded a penalty when Wests failed to kick the ball the minimum 10 metres. Norths then received another penalty after the siren and instead of pressing the defence in pursuit of another try, instead opted to take the two points on offer, much to the disappointment of even their own fans.

For Wests, it was an extremely disappointing performance. After stretching Cronulla last week, today was a return to fundamental errors which at this level will be punished severely by the opposition. Missed tackles, poor attacking options and too much drop ball resulted in Norths having an easy afternoon and boosting their for and against in the process.

For Wests, Dean Parata was again their best being busy in defence and the only player causing Norths some problems with his dummy half runs. Aaron Sweeney again gave his all in attack and defence, Tuki Jackson had his moments whilst playing in the centres and David Fifita taking the ball up with gusto.

It doesn't any better next week for Wests when they take on the competitions yardstick and defending premiers for the last few seasons, Canterbury at Campbelltown Stadium. Kick off is at 3pm.

Norths 52 (Justin Hunt 3, Nathan Merritt, Bennett Leslie, Luke Keary, Joey Matapuku, Brock Molan, Brendan McKinnon tries: Justin Hunt 8 goals) def Wests 6 (Davidi Fifita try and goal).

Half Time - Norths 20 Western Suburbs 0

Penalities Wests 7 Norths 6

1 Zoram Watene
2 Greg Davies
14 Aaron Teariki
22 Tuki Jackson
5 Daniel Perkins
6 Dean Parata
7 Nigel Millgate (c)
8 Jay Maseuli
9 Steven Rooney
10 Aaron Sweeney
11 Mundarra Weldon
12 Seffa Silafu
13 Tom Morrison

15 Michael Lekkas
16 Keanu Rogers
17 David Fifita
19 Todd Makejev

21 Nathan Merritt
11 Greg Nichols
3 Bennett Leslie (c)
4 Fetuli Talanoa
5 Curtis Johnston
6 Justin Hunt
7 Ryan Carr
22 Neccrom Areaiiti
13 Nathan Peats
10 Josh Starling
20 Chris McQueen
25 Adrian Ha'angana
12 Brock Molan

8 Joey Matapuku
15 Mayy Hyland
9 Brendon McKinnon
18 Luke Keary                      

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Seemed that the Magpies only tactic was to get the ball wide to Fafita. It was a disappointing game but we dropped way too much ball and were out classed again. Unfortunately, even with the bye, wests tigers decided once again to only farm out available NRL players to the bailmain club.