Balmain Ryde Eastwood Tigers keep NSW Cup Premiership hopes alive
Sep 17, 2012 | By Jennie Webster
By Wayne Cousins
Balmain Ryde Eastwood Tigers kept their NSW Cup premiership hopes alive with a 29-20 victory over Wentworthville Magpies at Leichhardt Oval.
The win sees the Tigers play Newcastle Knights in a Grand Final qualifier at Leichhardt Oval on Sunday, September 23, at 3pm. The Magpies season is over.
It is the second straight week the Paul Fletcher coached Tigers have survived sudden death football following as comprehensive win over Windsor Wolves at Belmore last Saturday.
In perfect conditions at Leichhardt Oval, the Tigers scored six tries to four in front of a good atmosphere at the historic ground.
Second-rower Josh Davis scored two tries in the win and was superb in attack and defence while five-eighth Tom Humble showed his class in attack and kicked a field goal to secure the victory.
Wentworthville opened the scoring in the 3rd minute through a try to full-back Jarome MacKenzie after the ball was spread right before Jake Mullaney delivered the final pass. The try came on the back of a 40/20 play by the Magpies. The try was not converted for a 4-0 scoreline.
The Tigers hit back in the 7th minute when five-eighth Tom Humble showed the ball before splitting the defence to race 40 metres to offload to winger Jy Hitchcox who despite being ankle tapped, got up off the ground to score in the right corner for a 4-all scoreline. Full-back and captain Sean Meaney failed to convert the try from the sideline.
Wentworthville went to an 8-4 lead in the 20th minute when forward Broderick Wright crashed over next to the posts. Five-eighth Jason Wehbe converted to give Wentworthville a 10-4 lead after 21 minutes.
The Tigers suffered a big blow when the in-form Hitchcox down suffered a right ankle injury after trying to catch a crossfield bomb. He left the field on a stretcher in the 27th minute and did not return.
A crossfield kick that was allowed to bounce saw Meaney grab the ball to score for the Tigers in the 28th minute. Meaney converted his own try for a 10-all scoreline after 30 minutes.
An inside pass by Mullaney put Wentworthville lock Justin Horo over for a 14-10 lead after 35 minutes. Wehbe converted the try for a 16-10 scoreline after 37 minutes.
The second half was just 4 minutes old when Tigers prop Ray Cashmere muscled his way over to score next to the posts. Meaney converted the try for a 16-all scoreline after 45 minutes.
Three minutes later, strong running Tigers second-rower Josh Davis managed to plant the ball down with three defenders on him in the left hand corner to give Balmain Ryde Eastwood Tigers a 20-16 lead. Meaney failed to convert the try from the sideline.
Balmain Ryde Eastwood were in again in the 53rd minute when Humble delivered a good short ball to put second-rower Jared Farlow over. Meaney’s attempt hit from the sideline hit the posts to leave the Tigers leading 24-16.
Tigers second-rower David Harris was placed on report for a high shot in the 62nd minute.
Davis scored his second try two minutes later when he crossed over in the same corner. The try was set up by Humble who split the defence to beat several defenders in a 30 metre run to be tackled short of the line. The ball was then spread left for Davis to score. Meaney failed to convert the try to leave the Tigers leading 28-16.
Humble secured victory for the Tigers when he landed a field goal six minutes out from full-time for a 29-16 lead.
The Magpies scored a late consolation try to winger Dylon Gilbert in the 79th minute. Wehbe failed to convert the try.