On Saturday night the Wests Tigers hung on to give their fans at Leichhardt Oval a close win when they defeated a defiant Cronulla Sharks outfit 24 – 22.
The Tigers are clinging to their fourth spot on the ladder, with punters that backed them to ‘Make the Top 4’ at Ladbrokes.com.au growing confidence with every win.
The Tigers are looking closer to pay out on the ‘Make the Top 4’ bets punters placed at Ladbrokes.com.au
The loss, Cronulla’s fifth on the trot, has seen the Sharks sink to the last of the premiership contenders now in 15th spot with a long last few weeks until the season’s end.
In a try-for-try showdown that kept the stadium on the edge of their seats on Saturday, the Sharks were first to score when former Tiger Dean Collis got his first of the night in the 12th minute after a barnstorming run through defenders Chris Lawrence and Lote Tuqiri.
The Tigers’ Mitch Brown answered back quickly opening the Wests account just five minutes later, and where Scott Porter missed the Sharks first conversion Benji Marshall booted the Tigers’ through so the home side were in front 6 – 4 after the first quarter.
Second-rower Liam Fulton backed up another five minutes later scoring the Tigers second try to extend their lead 10 – 4.
The Sharks weren’t about to let the Tigers get too far in front, however, and winger Blake Ferguson scored the next try for Cronulla in the 30th minute.
Porter converted this time to tie the score at 10 all.
Then just when it looked like they would be locked at half-time, Chris Lawrence pushed the Tigers to the lead with a 40th minute try following a solid 40m run and Wests took a 14 – 10 advantage to the sheds.
Back from the break the Tigers got off to a flying start with Fulton making it a match double just two minutes in, Lawrence’s kick giving them an eight point buffer.
Nearly 15 minutes went by before another point was scored, but it was big man Lote Tuqiri who got the next play with a 65th minute try, the Tigers fifth and final for the night.
Five minutes later the Sharks fullback Nathan Gardner narrowed the deficit with a converted try off a high kick, but it wasn’t enough and the Tigers won by two.
In a nail-biting final few seconds the Sharks looked to have clawed their way to victory when Ben Pomeroy got over the line, but a controversial held call by the ref snuffed out their chance.
Next week the Tigers have a tough game against the Rabbitohs and if you want the best NRL odds on the match don’t go to the TAB.
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