NRL | Another big defeat
Wests Tigers scored 40 unanswered points in 40 minutes on their way to handing the Vodafone Warriors a second straight 16-50 loss in today's 25th-round NRL clash at Campbelltown Sports Stadium.
The understrength Vodafone Warriors had provided optimism when they opened the scoring through a rampant Albert Vete in the eighth minute but then had to wait until the 64th minute for their second try to left wing Matt Allwood.
By then the contest had been well and truly taken away from them by a Wests Tigers side fizzed up by the drama surrounding their captain Robbie Farah's future.
Farah, told he can look elsewhere for a contract, was in everything once the Tigers found their rhythm.
He scored his side's opening try - leaving the crowd in raptures - and then had a hand in the next two to halfback Luke Brooks and Dene Halatau. In just 15 minutes the Tigers had scored 18 points to convert a six-point deficit into a 12-point lead.
The Vodafone Warriors did well to keep the margin down to 12 points at the break, such was the zest in the Tigers' game.
If the interval gave the Vodafone Warriors the chance to regroup it didn't work out that way as the Tigers went on the rampage with four more tries between the 45th and 60th minutes to surge to a 40-6 lead.
The Vodafone Warriors couldn't get their hands on the ball as the Tigers' attack fired up and, with 20 minutes still left, the Vodafone Warriors had a massive challenge in front of them simply keeping Wests Tigers in check.
For a few minutes they succeeded as the ball went left to give Allwood an easy run-in for his first try in the 64th minute and he then added his second for the day when he cleverly pulled in a Sebastine Ikahihifo off load to give him three tries in two appearances this season.
The Tigers were irresistible, though, and had an appetite for more points. They found them, too, first with a try to Martin Taupau and then with more razzle dazzle football on the right edge for a second try for wing David Nofualuma.
That brought up the half century leaving the Vodafone Warriors on the end of a score-line identical to the one they endured in last week's loss to North Queensland.
They also suffered more injury trouble with fullback Sam Tomkins leaving the field with renewed concern over the left knee complaint which sidelined him for much of the season. It resulted in a shuffle with Lolohea moving to fullback for most of the second half.
There was also concern with prop Charlie Gubb being placed on report twice for shoulder charges.
The Vodafone Warriors fly home tonight to prepare for their final match of the season against Canterbury-Bankstown today week when they will strive to end a seven-match losing streak.
Match details | Campbelltown Sports Stadium, Sydney
Wests Tigers 50 (David Nofoaluma 2, Robbie Farah, Luke Brooks, Dene Halatau, Tim Simona, Kevin Naiqama, Pat Richards, Martin Taupau tries; Pat Richards 7 conversions).
Vodafone Warriors 16 (Matt Allwood 2, Albert Vete tries; Tuimoala Lolohea 2 conversions).
Halftime: 18-6 Wests Tigers.
Referees: Gavin Reynolds and Chris Sutton.
Vodafone Warriors | Sam Tomkins; Matt Allwood, Dominique Peyroux, Solomone Kata, Jonathan Wright; Mason Lino, Tuimoala Lolohea; Sebastine Ikahihifo, Nathan Friend, Albert Vete; Bodene Thompson, Ryan Hoffman; Simon Mannering (c). Interchange: Konrad Hurrell, Sione Lousi, Charlie Gubb, Sam Lisone.