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Wests Tigers upset Souths in Bunnies boilover

Wests Tigers 25 South Sydney 16

Greg Inglis is led from the field.

Greg Inglis is led from the field. Photo: Anthony Johnson

Tim Simona scored two tries in his NRL return for Wests Tigers but it was a tackle he made on Greg Inglis that had the biggest impact on Friday night's match at ANZ Stadium after the South Sydney superstar was forced from the field with concussion.

In a further blow for Souths, star hooker Issac Luke was also taken from the field with a shoulder injury suffered late in the match.

Tim Simona hits Greg Inglis in the tackle that ended the Rabbitohs fullback's game.

Tim Simona hits Greg Inglis in the tackle that ended the Rabbitohs fullback's game. Photo: Anthony Johnson

Time
80.00
Team
WES
Score
25
Team
SOU
Score
16
Wests Tigers versus South Sydney
View Match Statistics
Players Thompson, Simona(2), Richards, Tedesco Tries 5 Tries 3 Players Lowe, Reddy(2)
Players Richards 2/4 (50%), Anasta 0/1 (0%) Conversions 2 Conversions 2 Players Reynolds 2/3 (66%)
Players Penalty goals 0 Penalty goals 0 Players
Players Anasta 1/1 (100%) Field goals 1 Field goals 0 Players

Simona, who also failed to finish the match after collecting an errant boot from Sam Burgess early in the second half, was one of five players placed on report in the drama-charged match following his spectacular fifth-minute hit on Inglis as the Rabbitohs fullback fielded the ball from a short kick-off.

Souths forward Ben Lowe, who was also involved in a controversial incident after tackling Pat Richards high as the Tigers winger dived for the try line, had just scored and Richards created plenty of hang time with an NFL-style kick-off that tested the mental toughness of Inglis as he juggled the ball with the chasers bearing down on him from close range.

Simona was travelling at full speed when he hit a falling Inglis high and the Australian and Queensland star failed to return after being taken from the field for a concussion assessment.

Adam Reynolds gets a pass away.

Adam Reynolds gets a pass away. Photo: Anthony Johnson

It is likely Simona will face a dangerous contact charge under changes to the NRL judiciary guidelines after a number of sickening incidents from kick-offs, including Kyle O'Donnell being knocked senseless while playing for Newcastle in 2012.

Wests interchange forward James Gavet was also placed on report for kneeing George Burgess, who also faces a high-tackle charge for a shot on Aaron Woods and may also come under scrutiny from the match review committee for a late hit on Tigers halfback Luke Brooks

Elder brother Sam also earned the ire of referees Matt Cecchin and Alan Shortall for sparking a brawl after he took exception to a tackle in which George fell awkwardly after being pushed backwards by Woods while Adam Blair had hold of his ankles, but they gave him the benefit of the doubt over the incident in which Simona was kicked in the head.

Adam Blair hits the turf. Click for more photos

Rabbitohs shocked by Tigers

An injury to Greg Inglis put the Rabbitohs on the back foot early against an impressive Tigers side. Photo: Anthony Johnson

Cecchin issued a general caution to Souths late in the match over the number of high tackles after placing centre Bryson Goodwin on report for a high shot on Tigers fullback James Tedesco, and his patience eventually ran out when Luke Burgess was sent to the sin bin for the remainder of the match.

Boom Wests Tigers halfback Luke Brooks was also dispatched to the bin late in the match for a professional foul.

Without Inglis, the Rabbitohs posed little threat with the ball and their attack lacked any real punch as they tended to drift more sideways than forward in a error-riddled performance/

After conceding a soft try when they allowed Lowe to split the defence and stroll over in the fourth minute, the Tigers gained control of the match after Inglis's departure and eventually scored when Brooks put Bodene Thompson over in the 14th minute.

However, it took Wests until the 30th minute to hit the lead when Simona scored after stand-in Souths fullback Nathan Merritt and centre Joel Reddy messed up a towering Braith Anasta bomb and Liam Fulton regathered the ball before passing wide to the talented centre prospect.

The Tigers were denied a penalty try two minutes later after video referees Jared Maxwell and Andrew Dunemann ruled that Richards had gone into touch before being hit high by Lowe, despite replays showing otherwise.

But Simona ensured the home side went to the break with a 14-6 lead after crossing untouched following an offload by Blair to skipper Robbie Farah and Wests went further ahead when Richards returned from a concussion assesement to score in the 42nd minute.

A converted Tedesco try sealed the win in 53rd minute but Anasta made sure with a field goal 10 minutes later before Souths centre Joel Reddy scored two consolation tries in the dying minutes.

17 comments so far

  • Some worrying signs for the Rabbitohs. Frankly, Souths haven't played many good games since SOO3 last year - they peaked in late June and haven't regained that form since.

    Losing Inglis tonight didn't help, but there's a lack of cohesion in the team. Reynolds seems lacking in confidence, perhaps missing the Sutton combination until tonight.

    Far too many unforced errors tonight, gifting Tigers possession, and leading to a huge tackle count.

    Souths have really missed the spark McQueen brings out wide, and close to the line.

    If Isaac Luke is sidelined with injury we really need Sutton back at five-eighth to steady the ship.

    Sam Burgess continues to play with commitment, we'd be flogged without his effort.

    As individuals, most guys aren't playing too badly, but there's no teamwork.

    When was the last time you saw all the team patting each other on the back, as they did last year? I don't go too much for Fittler's rumours of dissension in the squad, I don't think there's any great rifts, but there's a lack of confidence and cohesion that might not be easy to fix.

    It's a long season, and some early losses isn't the end of it, but Souths need to hit some form over the next month or they'll be struggling to catch up.

    Commenter
    Roger
    Location
    Surry Hills
    Date and time
    March 21, 2014, 10:44PM
    • One man teams don't win comps.

      Will Souths please.hand back the trophy they thought was theirs two weeks ago.

      Commenter
      Chieftain
      Date and time
      March 22, 2014, 12:50PM
  • They still have that 42 year chip on the shoulder don't they. The Rabbitoh’s do not have that killer instinct necessary to win a NRL GF in 2014. As soon as anything goes wrong they fold. Burgess's defection at the end of the year has only maintained that inferiority complex for this year. Any little hiccup that occurs within the team is compounded because there is no leader to neutralise it. South’s don't have an inspirational captain to eliminate the negatives at present. There are a couple of players who could be that person but don't seem to want the responsibility either because of immaturity or lack of commitment and it’s that immaturity and lack of commitment that will not allow them a GF win and probably not even a shot at it this year. There is no chance in hell that South’s can win a premiership in 2014 even with all the on field talent they have unless a real on field leader puts his hand up. Who is that man going to be?

    Commenter
    RTP
    Location
    Sawtell
    Date and time
    March 21, 2014, 11:34PM
    • That will just about do me - so now you are allowed to knee a bloke in the head for all to see but you get to remain on the field. If that wasn't a clear case of a send off I'm confused. Why have a rule for concussion yet allow such blatant thuggery to essentially go unpunished - the tigers had 17 players tonight and even if the thug gets a suspension the tigers can still have 17 players. NRL you are a joke!!! I wonder how many parents watching on prime time tv will let their youngsters play this game. The AFL is making huge inroads into the schools and junior ranks, and thanks to inept decision makers and outright thugs they will be making even more.

      Commenter
      Not a fan
      Date and time
      March 21, 2014, 11:45PM
      • No one was knee'd in the head. He was trying to get his arm out and threw his knee into the blokes arm.

        Commenter
        Tyler Fitzgerald
        Location
        Pratten Park
        Date and time
        March 24, 2014, 7:51AM
    • Was that a game of football or a just a bunch of thugs bashing the &@!? out of each other. Attacking the head of a player as he's on his knees, dropping the knee into the head of a player who is held, bending a player backwards when his legs are being held (clearly an intention to harm) and plenty of high shots. Throw in a couple of very incompetent pink fools for good measure. What a great advertisement for the NRL!!!

      Commenter
      Street fighters
      Date and time
      March 21, 2014, 11:58PM
      • After watching the Wests Tigers vs South Sydney match it seems difficult to believe that the NRL is taking the issue of brain injuries seriously considering the media attention on former first grade footballer Mario Fenech during the week and the fact that several concussed players were able to retake the field after suffering a concussion. There were two concussions throughout the match resulting in a player from each team not returning to the field. As well as a number of other head high tackles. Perhaps there should be a mandatory layoff period followed by extensive medical tests for any player suffering from a concussion. Player welfare should be of the highest priority.

        Commenter
        Michael from Bradbury
        Date and time
        March 22, 2014, 1:25AM
        • Im seething about what happened tonight. GI was deliberately taken out by a cheap dog-shot - and it changed the game. I guess the Tigers realised they didn't have the players to compete with the worlds best players so theyd try to belt us. Well just wait for the return game, Tigers fans. We will take care of youse. And we are still looking good for the premiership, tonight was a nothing game. Tigers definitely can't make the 8.

          Commenter
          Bouncing Bunny of Struggle Street
          Date and time
          March 22, 2014, 2:42AM
          • Bwahahaha!
            You are one funny guy. Not bouncing today? Us tiggers love to bounce. Least you had something to say unlike you dribbler mate the bear. very quiet today Mr Bear
            When you get smashed by the wooden spoon favourites it's a nothing game. 43 years......and counting

            Commenter
            Tigger
            Location
            In The Trophy Room
            Date and time
            March 22, 2014, 5:43PM
          • Well, it just goes to show....if you put a monkey in front of a typewriter, eventually he will type a word. The Tigepies finally getting a win over the Bunnies. Wonders will never cease!

            Commenter
            FaulcoBear
            Location
            Faulconbridge
            Date and time
            March 23, 2014, 6:30AM

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