Sunday, May 26, 2013

Rnd 8 - Ron Massey Cup - Match Review

Undefeated Mounties kept their perfect record intact with a 66-16 demolition of Western Suburbs last weekend at Mount Pritchard Sportsground.

Mounties were expected to be far too strong for the young Magpies outfit looking to back up their 32-24 victory over Kingsgrove last week and things went according to the script early, with Grant Lahey opening the scoring when he proved simply too big to handle for the Magpies defence. David Farkas was successful with the conversion attempt and Mounties led 6-0 after as many minutes.

After exchanging penalties, Farkas was in the action again, threading a perfectly weighted grubber through the line. Both Tala Mapesone and Amanono Tovio found themselves a little too deep, allowing Billy King to swoop from nowhere to register his first of the afternoon. Farkas slotted the goal, Mounties keeping pace with the clock early.

Penalties punctuated the next ten minutes, with the highlight being the clash between Magpies backrower Tom Morrison and Mounties prop Mitch Cahalane, which saw Morrison placed on report.

David Farkas was playing out of his skin and he provided a sublime short ball on 24 minutes Cahalane, who drew Amanono Tovio in before sending Grant Lahey on his way for his second try. Farkas put the two points away, Mounties skipping out to an 18-0 lead with 15 minutes to the break.

Farkas laid on the next try too. However, it wasn’t for his team. A huge overlap on the left side tempted Farkas into throwing a long cut-out ball, which was picked off by Nathan Scaranto, who dashed the 85 metres to touch down, despite the best efforts of Tim Tautuaa. David Atuau potted the conversion from in front and Wests found a glimmer of hope at 18-6 with eight minutes until the break.

Mounties started to feel the pressure just before the interval and their struggles allowed Wests to score another try, with a bomb being put down by Billy King, Sonny Bristow on hand to pick up the crumbs and dive over. David Atuau converted and Wests were back in the game at halftime, down 18-12.

Magpies coach Leo Epifania said halftime was the worst thing that could have happened to his team, and it is difficult to argue with the Magpies boss. Just five minutes had elapsed before Louis Vaitou took advantage of the Wests defence not numbering up, with his second try. David Farkas pushed the conversion wide, Mounties back out to a ten point lead.

Mounties took just three minutes to add to their tally, with Pat Galea showing a Benji-like sidestep to cut through the Wests line before sending Robbie Mate on his way. Farkas added the two, Mounties now leading 28-12 with just over half an hour to play.

Wests could not halt the Mounties momentum as Wayne Dargan secured a loose ball off a bomb which provided either a room service bounce, if you’re a Mounties fan, or a Freddie Kreuger bounce if you’re a Magpie. Farkas added the extras and the score started to look ominous for Wests at 34-12.

There was no relief for the Magpies as another last tackle run paid dividends on 58 minutes, with Louis Vaitou on hand to notch a hat-trick out wide. A change of kicker to Blake Davies bore no fruit, though, Davies pushing the conversion attempt wide at 38-12.

Mounties were finding plenty of success on last tackle options, and they did so again five minutes later, another bomb finding the turf with Grant Lahey touching down despite the efforts of a gallant Amanono Tovio. Davies was successful at his second attempt at goal, Mounties moving out to 44-12.

The home side registered the half century just three minutes later after a Magpies drop-out. The Magpies showed plenty of enthusiasm at marker, but perhaps a little too much, as Fred Pakutoa simply waited for the Wests markers to split before darting through. Davies added the extras and Wests were looking for some inspiration with 12 minutes to go.

Wests did find some inspiration through Wests Tigers NSW Cup five-eighth Jack Madden and, with nine minutes to play, a grubber from Madden found space in the Mounties in-goal thanks to Tim Tautuaa rushing up to stop the passing option, Tuiniua Paiaaua sneaking in behind to score. David Atuau missed the difficult conversion attempt, Wests trailing 50-16 with eight minutes on the clock.

Mounties replied to the plucky Magpie effort by posting two tries in five minutes, the first to Wayne Dargan after a left hand spread on the last, the second to Theo Leato after a similar play on the right hand side. Both tries were converted by Blake Davies and Mounties had cracked 60 with a minute to play.

With time running down, a rather charitable penalty to Mounties for a high shot gave them the chance for one final left spread, with Wayne Dargan joining Grant Lahey in the hatters club for the afternoon. Pat Galea shaved the right hand uprights despite his teammates vocally urging the ball through the posts, Mounties finishing an even 50 ahead of Wests at the final siren.

For Mounties, David Farkas was nothing short of magnificent, with Pat Galea and Wayne Dargan also in the thick of it. For the gallant Magpies, Dean Rysko and Jack Madden led the way all afternoon, ably supported by Mason Harrison.

Next weekend, Mounties head over to Blacktown to face off against the Workers, while the Magpies will take a trip down memory lane, as they do battle with Guildford at Lidcombe Oval, both games kicking off at 3pm Saturday.

MOUNTIES 66 (Grant Lahey 3, Wayne Dargan 3, Louis Vaitou 2, Billy King, Robbie Mate, Wayne Dargan, Fred Pakutoa, Theo Leato tries; David Farkas 5 from 6, Blake Davies 4 from 5, Pat Galea 0 from 1) def WESTERN SUBURBS 16 (Nathan Scarano, Sonny Bristow, Tuiniua Paiaaua tries; David Atuau 2 from 3)

Penalties: Wests 4 Mounties 6

Halftime: Wests 12 Mounties 18

Western Suburbs

1. Amanono Tovio
2. Tuiniua Paiaaua
20. Nathan Scarano
19. Sam Aiga
5. Tala Mapesone
6. David Atuau
17. Jack Madden
22. Seffa Silafau
9. Matt Jones
10. Soni Passi
11. Tom Morrison
4. Jerome Mose
8. Dean Rysko

12. Mason Harrison
13. Sonny Bristow
14. Matiasi Toutai
18. Jamie Anyszkiewicz


16. Theo Leato
2. Billy King
4. Louis Vaitou
21. Wayne Dargan
5. Tim Tautuaa
6. David Farkas
7. Robbie Mate
8. Mitch Cahalane
9. Lancen Joudo
23. Pat Galea
15. Fred Pakutoa
12. Tim Baldwin
11. Grant Lahey

13. Jason Green
17. Blake Davies
18. Nick Kassis
20. Tunui Maurangi

By Keith Topolski

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

A night with the Wests Tigers coaching staff

Have you ever wondered what it is like to coach an NRL team?

This exclusive insiders function will give you all the answers you need on how the Wests Tigers operate.

The coaching panel will treat you as a Wests Tigers debutant, going through pre-match video, opposition review, match day tactics and individual player performance review.

The night will conclude with an open floor, question and answer session with the Wests Tigers coaching staff including Mick Potter, Royce Simmons, Steve Georgallis, Todd Payten and John Skandalis.

The evening will be full of laughter, information, but most of all the chance to get an inside look at what goes on at the club.

The event will take place in the Steve Waugh Room at the SCG on May 30; with tickets on sale now for $75
(includes a two course meal and drinks for two hours).

To book your seat, call Wests Tigers reception on (02) 8741 3300 or purchase your ticket online at

1963 Western Suburbs Heritage jerseys in-store now!

Heritage jerseys have arrived and are available for purchase from our Gearzone stores and online.

The jerseys celebrate 50 years since the famous 1963 Grand Final between St George and Western Suburbs, which the Dragons controversially won 8-3.

The Wests Tigers wore the jersey in our Round 6 clash with the St. George/Illawarra Dragons at the Sydney Cricket Ground, which was witnessed by a crowd of over 21,000 people.

Don’t miss out on your piece of history, pick up your jersey from one of our Gearzone outlets at Concord Oval or Macarthur Square Campbelltown.

Alternatively you can buy online. Jerseys have a RRP of $160.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

NRL deal with Tigers needs balance: Wests

Financially powerful Western Suburbs are demanding to be on equal terms with Balmain in the struggling Wests Tigers merger.

However, the Magpies faction denied they would attempt to separate themselves from Balmain, saying it would be unrealistic for the foundation club to re-enter the NRL as a lone entity.


Rnd 7 Ron Massey Cup - Match Review

Wests held on to defeat Kingsgrove 32-24 last weekend at a gloriously sunny Leichhardt Oval.

Kingsgrove opened the scoring for the afternoon with a soft try for Petros Thanos straight through the middle of the ruck. Sam Madah converted from adjacent to the posts to put the Colts ahead 6-0 after as many minutes.

The Colts try spurred Wests into action and some strong running and fast attack caught Kingsgrove short on their own line, with Magpies hooker Matt Jones burrowing over. David Attua pulled the conversion wide, Kingsgrove up by two after a quarter hour.

Kingsgrove nearly added to their lead after Magpies custodian Amanono Tovio spilt the long kick by Braeden Batiste, but the Wests line held solid to hold the Colts up on the last tackle.

Western Suburbs continued to find space through a tiring Colts defence and were rewarded just after the half hour, with Michael Mate providing for, and then receiving back, a quality ball from Tala Mapesone, to touch down out wide. Eddie Paea slotted the touchline conversion to push Wests out to a four point lead with seven minutes to the break.

Wests blew the game open just a minute later when some rapid fire passing forced David Attua back on the inside, where he found Eddie Paea, who strolled through a gaping wound in the Colts line to collect his second try of 2013. Paea converted his own try and the Magpies jumped out to a ten point lead five minutes before the break.

The Magpies weren’t done, however, and a scurrying run from Matt Jones drew in the Colts markers, allowing for an inside ball to captain Dean Rysko, who showed good strength to touch down despite the attention of three Colts in defence. Eddie Paea slotted the simple conversion attempt to see Wests leading 22-6 at half time.

The Magpies came out crowing in the second half and took just two minutes to find the line, with a glorious last tackle pass from Eddie Paea finding Tala Mapesone on a saloon passage to the line. Paea bravely rose after being flattened as he passed it to shave the upright with his conversion attempt, the Magpies jumping out to a twenty point lead with just three minutes elapsed in the second stanza.

Kingsgrove needed to score next to stay in the game and after being held up, or so said the referee according to the Colts faithful, a neat kick from Braeden Batiste found Miseli Vaikeli reaching high to pluck the ball from the air. Sam Madah converted from touch to put the Colts back in touch at 26-12.

The Magpies were quick to hit back just five minutes later, though, with some wild passing eventually creating gaps in the Kingsgrove line, Seffa Silafau on hand to bustle his way over. Paea added the extras from next to the posts, Wests regaining their 20 point break with 20 minutes on the clock.

The Colts refused to give in and their determination gave Braeden Batiste time on the last tackle to place another lovely bomb to the south-eastern corner of the sun-drenched Leichhardt, with Miseli Vaikeli picking the ball off and bringing it around for his second of the afternoon. Sam Madah slotted the conversion from in front, and the Colts were still in the game at 32-18 with 15 minutes to play.

Kingsgrove grew desperate and Braeden Batiste flung a long ball into touch. Wests, however, turned possession over immediately after the ensuing scrum, which allowed Batiste to atone for his error by jinking his way over the line. Sam Madah added the extras and Kingsgrove were finishing with a wet sail.

Wests refused to play conservatively, though, and Kingsgrove had an opportunity to make a grandstand finish of the game with two minutes to play, however Batiste could not hold on to his attempted intercept of Eddie Paea’s long ball.

For the Magpies, Tom Morrison was vital as the stabilising force for Wests, while Dean Rysko and Eddie Paea also led the way. For Kingsgrove, Miseli Vaikeli was immense for the Colts, with Braeden Batiste and Sam Burgess showing plenty of heart.

WESTERN SUBURBS 32 (Matt Jones, Michael Mate, Eddie Paea, Dean Rysko, Tala Mapesone, Seffa Silafau tries; Eddie Paea 4 from 6, David Attua 0 from 1)

KINGSGROVE (Miseli Vaikeli 2, Petros Thanos, Braeden Batiste tries; Sam Madah 4 from 4)

Penalties: Wests 4 Kingsgrove 7

Halftime: Wests 22 Kingsgrove 6

Western Suburbs

1. Amanono Tovio
20. Tuiniua Paiaaua
2. Jerome Mose
3. Michael Mate
5. Tala Mapesone
6. David Attua
7. Eddie Paea
10. Soni Paasi
17. Matt Jones
22. Seffa Silafau
14. Mason Harrison
11. Tom Morrison
8. Dean Rysko

9. Joel Jasmin
15. Todd Makejev
16. Sonny Bristow
18. Jamie Anyskiewicz

25. Ofa Felicia
1. Brett Manning
19. Sam Madah
3. Jake Beetson
5. Miseli Vaikeli
6. Aiden Carney
7. Braeden Batiste
8. Zac Wedesweller
9. Guillame Bonnet
10. Josh Graham
11. Sam Burgess
12. Mark Mooney
13. Petros Thanos

2. Graeme Suapoe
15. Daniel Hansell
17. Temata Rangi
18. George Keates

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Ron Massey Cup Rnd 6 - Match Review

Feathers flew at Campbelltown last Saturday as the Asquith Magpies accounted for the Western Suburbs Magpies 38-26.

Western Suburbs opened the scoring on their first set of possession, with a left spread finding Mason Harrison in space, who dummied his way past Asquith custodian Kieran Vale to touch down under the posts. David Attua added the extras for a 6-0 Wests lead after 3 minutes.

Asquith didn’t take long to reply, with a dropped ball from the kick-off by Wests allowing Aaron Groom to dart across and around the Wests defence. Sione Ala slotted a booming touchline conversion to level the scores after just six minutes.

A long raking kick from Wests was dropped by Kieran Vale after seven minutes and from the ensuing set of six, Wests Tigers Holden Cup powerhouse Soni Paasi was too strong for four Asquith defenders. David Attua hit the post with his conversion attempt, Wests leading by four after ten minutes.

Asquith very nearly found space in the Wests line, only for referee Phil Sung to call back a forward pass. Asquith paid dearly for their error, with Wests winger Amanono Tovio recording his first of the season after a neat passing exchange. David Attua added the conversion to put Wests ten up after a quarter hour.

Both sides lacked for discipline and handling for the next 20 minutes, but it was Wests who broke their funk first, with a grubber through from Amanono Tovio missed by both Kieran Vale and Tala Mapesone, with new Wests signing Paul Simona on hand to ground the ball just inside the dead ball line. David Attua pushed the tricky conversion attempt wide, Wests taking their 20-6 lead through to the interval.

The handling woes of Wests continued into the second half with their second set of six being turned over to Ina Papera, who dodged and weaved his way to the line. Sione Ala added the two to close the gap to eight with 35 minutes to play.

Asquith backed up their good start with halfback Aaron Groom running into dummy half with Asquith on the Wests line, Groom darting across the field, leaving Seffa Silafau unable to keep up as Groom touched down. Sione Ala failed with the conversion, Wests holding an ever-decreasing four point break.

Wests refused to let their records across previous weeks come back to haunt them and new halfback Eddie Paea showed enormous determination to muscle his way through the much bigger Asquith defence to register his first try for 2013. David Attua successfully converted, and Wests extended their lead to 26-16.

Asquith needed to hit back quickly and halfback Aaron Groom showed why he is in the frame for Fijian World Cup selection at year’s end, bamboozling the Wests defence with another jinking run to score an acrobatic try. Sione Ala potted the two, and Wests lead was back to four.

The Wests defence was starting to show its’ now customary fatigue, and Asquith five-eight Jack Hawkins exposed some flimsy marker defence to touch down adjacent to the posts. Sione Ala added the simple conversion, and Asquith found themselves in front for the first time of the afternoon.

Asquith looked far more dangerous and a Jack Hawkins bomb was neatly plucked out of the air by Curtis Johnston, who managed to ground the ball despite the attention of his opposite number. Sione Ala pushed the tricky conversion wide, Asquith holding a delicate six point lead with as many minutes to play.

Asquith held their six point lead into the dying stages as Wests flung the ball wildly as the siren sounded. However, Adam Kalcina was on hand to pluck Dean Rysko’s no look pass from the air and race away to seal the game. Aaron Groom was successful with the conversion attempt, Asquith 38-26 victors.

For Asquith, Aaron Groom played with spiders on him, while Jack Hawkins and Mark Meredith also made big contributions, while for Wests, Dean Rysko, Paul Simona and Soni Paasi were the best among the vanquished.

Next weekend, Wests take on Kingsgrove at Leichhardt Oval on Saturday, while Asquith head back to Storey Park to face off against Guildford on Sunday.

ASQUITH 38 (Aaron Groom 3, Ina Papera, Jack Hawkins, Curtis Johnston, Adam Kalcina tries; Sione Ala 4 from 6, Aaron Groom 1 from 1) defeated WESTERN SUBURBS 26 (Mason Harrison, Soni Paasi, Amanono Tovio, Paul Simona, Eddie Paea tries; David Attua 3 from 5)

Penalties: Wests 4 Asquith 7

Halftime: Wests 20 Asquith 6

Western Suburbs

5. Amanono Tovio
11. Jerome Mose
19. Paul Simona
21. Michael Mate
4. Tala Mapesone
7. David Attua
15. Eddie Paea
18. Soni Paasi
9. Joel Jasmine
8. Dean Rysko (C)
12. Mason Harrison
13. Tom Morrison
20. Adrian Haangana

10. Seffa Silafau
14. Matiasi Toutai
16. Sonny Bristow
17. Matt Jones

1. Kieran Vale
2. Curtis Johnston
3. James Workman
4. Adam Kalcina
5. Sione Ala
6. Jack Hawkins
7. Aaron Groom
8. Dylan Montgomery
9. Luke Jay
10. Mark Meredith
11. Brendan Hurd
12. Joel Latham
13. Ryan Wheeler

14. Ina Papera
15. Mat Hurd
16. Josh Nichols
17. Greg Nichols

By Keith Topolski

Monday, May 6, 2013

Rnd 5 - Ron Massey Cup - Match Review

Burwood-North Ryde recorded their third win of the season in a scrappy game last Sunday at North Sydney Oval, dispatching poor Western Suburbs outfit 26-18.

Looking to build on their 30 point whipping on Kingsgrove last weekend, Burwood made the worst possible start with a knock-on in their first set of possession. Wests took full advantage, with Joel Jasmin putting Tom Morrison through a small hole in the United line. On the next play, Wests halfback David Attua barged his way through a still scrambling line to open the scoring for the afternoon. Attua added his own conversion and Wests led 6-0.

West seemed determined to do everything they could to let Burwood back into the game, with handling and discipline being problems in equal measure for the Magpies. However, for all their bumbling and fumbling, the Magpies doubled their lead on 20 minutes, as David Attua again found space, stepping through two tacklers and carrying another over the line with him. Jai Karam added the two, and Wests led 12-0 at the quarter mark.

However, the Magpie defence was proving to be brittle on the flanks, and five minutes later, Jordan Tongahai scooted over in the corner after a slick backline move. John Nicholas was unsuccessful with the conversion attempt, leaving Burwood eight down with 15 minutes until the interval.

Wests couldn’t believe their luck when a Burwood backline spread resulted in the tryscorer Tongahai running into touch without a hand laid on him. However, Wests coughed up possession cheaply two tackles later and the Burwood backs had the last laugh, with a neat kick being followed through by a bullocking Matt Evans, who touched down in an almost identical spot to Tongahai eight minutes earlier. BJ Nathan was unsuccessful with the conversion attempt, and Wests’ trend of conceding late points was biting them again.

Burwood followed in the footsteps of the Magpies’ last three opponents by recording a third try right on halftime, with former Magpie Latu Fifita crashing through some soft goal line defence out wide. A change of kicker to Matt Evans bore no fruit for United, with Wests and Burwood going to the break at 12 all.

The second half began with a string of Burwood errors and, just like the first half, the team making the errors scored first, with Joe Rokoqo cruising around Tala Mapesone to put Burwood in front for the first time in the match. Burwood finally found kicking success, with Jordan Tongahai adding the extras on 53 minutes.

Burwood could not find a fifth tackle for the next 15 minutes, either dropping the ball or being gifted a penalty by a poorly disciplined Wests side. A penalty for stealing the ball just after an hour gave Burwood a chance at extending the lead to eight, and Jordan Tongahai obliged by potting the penalty goal, Burwood leading 20-12 with 15 to play.

Burwood sealed the match with seven minutes on the clock, a left hand move creating an overlap and three men running at Amanono Tovio proved too much for the Magpies winger to handle as Jordan Tongahai registered Burwood’s fifth try of the day. Tongahai converted his own try and Wests looked done for the day.

However, Wests weren’t finished for the day, with their go to man from last year’s NSW Cup team, Seffa Silafau, pushing away some tired United defence to score. Jhy Karam slotted a booming touchline conversion to bring the margin back to eight, but Wests’ final attacking raid ended, appropriately, with a knock-on.

For Burwood, captain and former Magpie Joe Flint was impressive, while Jordan Tongahai and Daniel Johnson took the game to Wests. For the black and whites, Dean Rysko toiled hard in a beaten pack, while Amanono Tovio and Sam Aiga worked hard. That a winger was among the best three for each team spoke volumes for the standard of play.

Next weekend, Burwood pay a visit to McCredie Oval to take on Guildford, while Wests take part on a Magpie war against Asquith at Campbelltown, both games at 3-00pm.

BURWOOD-NORTH RYDE 26 (Jordan Tongahai 2, Matt Evans, Latu Fifita, Joe Rokoqo tries; Jordan Tongahai 3 from 3, John Nicholas 0 from 1, BJ Nathan 0 from 1, Matt Evans 0 from 1) def WESTERN SUBURBS 18 (David Attua 2, Seffa Silafau tries; Jai Karam 2 from 2, David Attua 1 from 1)

Penalties: Burwood 10 Wests 3

Half time: Burwood 12 Wests 12

Western Suburbs

19. Sam Aiga
2. Tuiniua Paiaaua
3. Fusi Toutai
4. Tala Mapesone
5. Amanono Tovio
1. Jai Karam
7. David Attua
8. Dean Rysko (C)
9. Joel Jasmin
10. Tom Morrison
11. Jerome Mose
12. Mason Harrison
18. Seffa Silafau

6. Nathan Rumsby
13. Todd Makejev
14. Matiasi Toutai
22. Jamie Anyskiewicz

Burwood-North Ryde

1. Matt Evans
2. BJ Nathan
21. Tim Winitana
4. Joe Rokoqo
5. Jordan Tongahai
6. John Nicholas
7. Daniel Johnson
22. Ilija Radan
14. Brayden Dwyer
20. Siupeli Huihahau
11. Sione Fakahua
12. Joe Mataele
13. Joe Flint (C)

10. Latu Fifita
15. Mark Fakahua
16. Elias Sukkar
24. Daniel Fepuleai

Friday, May 3, 2013

The Final 6: Wests Tigers Main jersey design

The club has been overwhelmed with the number of nominations we have received for the 2014 Home Jersey design competition. In total, we received 137 nominations.

The vast majority of people that entered the competition:

a) Wanted the traditional chevron design (67%) incorporated in to the jersey; and

b) Chose black (72%) as the base colour for the jersey.

As stated from the commencement of this competition, the club needs to remain faithful to the history and tradition of both clubs whilst forming a consistent and strong design element that will remain iconically “Wests Tigers” in its appearance. It also needs to resonate with the fans and be popular at a retail level.

The Wests Tigers Board and Staff reviewed all nominations and have agreed to advance the following 6 designs to the final stage. Please note that these designs have been slightly altered to allow for ease of production.

The final part of the process will include input from members, playing group, general fan base, retail partners and the NRL. The three most popular choices will then be sent to the West Tigers Board for final approval.

Many thanks to all those people who have played a part of the process to date and we look forward to receiving your input on the final six.

This competition relates to the home jersey only, our existing white alternate will be used for the 2014 season.

The official voting will be counted on our website. The poll is located on the home page in the right hand column. Voting will close on Wednesday, May 8 at 12pm.

Follow the link below to place your vote.