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Robbie Farah injured as Wests Tigers defeat Cowboys

Wests Tigers 16 North Queensland 4

Captain's knock: Robbie Farah crosses for a try in the Tigers' win over the Cowboys.

Captain's knock: Robbie Farah crosses for a try in the Tigers' win over the Cowboys. Photo: Getty Images

Skipper Robbie Farah dislocated his elbow as Wests Tigers continued their impressive start to the season with a 16-4 win over North Queensland in what may have been one of the joint-venture club's last games at Campbelltown Stadium.

Farah came from the field in pain after reeling out of a tackle just two minutes from fulltime, and he was later taken from the ground in an ambulance. However, Tigers officials said the joint had popped straight back in and the injury wasn't considered serious.

Time
80.00
Team
WES
Score
16
Team
NQL
Score
4
Wests Tigers versus North Queensland
View Match Statistics
Players Farah, Austin, Richards Tries 3 Tries 1 Players Tate
Players Richards 2/3 (66%) Conversions 2 Conversions 0 Players Thurston 0/1 (0%)
Players Penalty goals 0 Penalty goals 0 Players Thurston 0/1 (0%)
Players Field goals 0 Field goals 0 Players

Of more concern was the paltry crowd of 6456, which prompted a bitterly disappointed Wests chief executive Grant Mayer to announce the round 11 match against Brisbane on May 24 would be the last chance for fans to show they would support home games at Campbelltown.

Just six days after 16,311 fans braved torrential rain to cheer the Tigers to a 34-18 win over Manly at Leichhardt, the turnout at Campbelltown was the second lowest at the venue in the 15-year history of the joint venture and Mayer said the club could not afford to continue losing money by hosting games there before small crowds.

"I thank the 6500 fans here tonight, they are diehard fans but I scratch my head wondering what more we can do to attract a crowd at Campbelltown Sports Stadium," Mayer said.

"We are going to announce $10 tickets for our 15th anniversary match against the Broncos in round 11, where fans can sit anywhere they like, and it will be one last throw of the dice for Campbelltown to come and show they support their club.

"We have to sit down and reassess whether we can continue to run games here at a loss. I feel incredibly sorry for the 6500 fans who did attend tonight, they are are the ones who support their teams through thick and thin.

"It is difficult to reconcile that we got 16,500 people at Leichhardt in the rain and we won against one of the competition heavyweights, yet six days later we can only get 6500 people at one of the best venues in rugby league."

After winning three of their last four matches against competition leaders Gold Coast and premiership heavyweights South Sydney and Manly, it was difficult to understand why more fans didn't turn out to watch one of the most entertaining teams in the NRL play against an opposition boasting the likes of Johnathan Thurston, Brent Tate and Tariq Sims.

Those who did saw a gritty performance by a young Wests Tigers back line and a no-nonsense forward pack led superbly by Farah, who scored one try and set up his side's two others.

Rookie halfback Luke Brooks again gave glimpses of the potential he possesses in just his sixth NRL appearance to come out on top in his battle with former Tigers playmaker Robert Lui, while five-eighth Blake Austin was solid in his club debut.

The win was built on a first-half performance in which the Tigers made just one error and completed 19 of their 20 sets in possession.

Despite Farah crossing for his side's only try of the opening term when he raced over from dummy half in the 38th minute, it is an old adage in rugby league that games are won in the first half and the points are scored in the second and the Tigers wore their opponents down.

Bench forwards Martin Taupau and James Gavet again had a great impact for the Tigers, while Aaron Woods, Keith Galloway, Liam Fulton, Bodene Thompson and Adam Blair dominated the Cowboys pack.

Yet when former Test centre Brent Tate crossed for a well-deserved try in the 28th minute, it appeared as if it may not be the Tigers night as they had not been able to convert their domination of field position and possession into points.

But Farah's try gave the home side a 6-4 lead at the break and they did not concede a point in the second half.

Austin grabbed his first try in the black, white and gold jersey of Wests Tigers when he latched onto a grubber from Farah that ricocheted off Sims and then a goalpost pad to score in the 46th minute.

Winger Pat Richards secured the win five minutes from fulltime when he crossed in the corner after another Farah dummy half run created an overlap for the Tigers.

6 comments so far

  • Listen guys...I here your point about Leichhardt vs Cambelltown, consider Wests Vs Manly a traditional game on a Sunday afternoon, then at Cambelltown at Sat night vs Cowboys, so how can u compare? How about Parramatta/Penrith vs Wests Tigers at Cambelltown on a Sunday afternoon? CEO is claiming another Sat night vs Brisbane is the the big test. Hello?? how about a decent game there???

    Commenter
    Magpie and Wests Tigers forever!
    Location
    Dulwich Hill
    Date and time
    April 12, 2014, 10:30PM
    • I was listening to this game on ABC radio and when they announced the crowd figure of 6500, one commentator accused the Cowboys fans of not travelling well. FYI Townsville is about 3000 klms away. Even for Sydney this figure is pathetic.

      Commenter
      DP
      Location
      GC
      Date and time
      April 13, 2014, 8:32AM
      • It's all very well for Wests and their supporters to whinge about the merger and the current position of Balmain, but, when push comes to shove, there doesn't seem to be much substance to their argument, if bums on seats is used as a measuring stick.

        Commenter
        Parto
        Location
        Wild West
        Date and time
        April 13, 2014, 9:15AM
        • I am one of the few fans who actually has a degree in marketing, nevertheless I chose IT. The NRL need not be baffled by a crowd of 6500 at Campbelltown. They simply need to look at the lessons that Origin provides - quality matters, quantity doesnt.

          The NRL regular season is focused on quantity and that reduces the meaning of each game. And Campbelltown Stadium is a dank dim hole. And, more importantly, the people of Campbelltown dont feel that this team is their team. Do the West Tigers ever get out in that community and show them some love?

          Commenter
          jg
          Location
          Canberra
          Date and time
          April 13, 2014, 9:51AM
          • Now what excuses are the leaguies bringing up to explain the crowd for this match. Surely you have used them all up. Just face it Rugby League is struggling big time and Football and AFL is that far ahead League may as well give up now and do everyone a favor

            Commenter
            FC of Sydney
            Date and time
            April 13, 2014, 9:58AM
            • As a NSW fan, here's hoping that Robbie's elbow pops back out of place and he misses origin. The overarted nuffie!

              Commenter
              4thgrader
              Location
              Manly
              Date and time
              April 13, 2014, 9:13PM

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