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Match Report: Holden Cup Round 25

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Wests Tigers Holden Cup team have gone down 26-18 to a strong North Queensland Cowboys side in their Round 25 clash tonight at Campbelltown Sports Stadium.

After posting first points three minutes in to the contest through Liam Pakau, Wests Tigers found themselves trailing 12-6 midway through the first half before conceding a soft try right on the stroke of half-time which gave the visitors all the momentum for the second half.

North Queensland would flex their muscle in the second half, opening up a commanding lead despite both teams being reduced to 12 men following a coming together in the middle.

Wests Tigers would cross late, but it would be not enough for Chris Hutchison's side, as the Cowboys held on to emerge with a 26-18 victory at Campbelltown Sports Stadium.

It had been a promising start for the home side, who took advantage of some space down the left to create a long-range try through Pakau inside the opening five minutes.

Tautaiolefua's sideline conversion extended the lead to 6-0, before tries to Enari Tuala and Jayden Stephens put the Cowboys back in front in a back-and-forth first half.

With less than a minute to go before the break, Murray Taulagi went over in the corner off a kick in behind the line — giving the visitors a 16-6 advantage at half-time.

As tensions rose on the field, both Josh Bermingham and Nathan Traill were sent to the sin-bin for fighting. However, that did little to quell the visitors' momentum, who extended their lead out to 20 points as Mick Carroll fell on an opportune grubber while Cody Maughan charged through the line to score soon after.

Despite the game being beyond reach, Hutchison would no doubt have been pleased with the effort of his side, who continued to fight until the end and added some respectability to the scoreboard inside the final five minutes as Pakau crossed for his second before Daniel Peck also burrowed over from dummy half.

Tautaiolefua's successful kicking on both occasions cut the score to 26-18, which is how it would read as the full-time siren rang out at Campbelltown Sports Stadium.

 

North Queensland Cowboys 26 (Tuala, Stephens, Taulagi, Carroll, Maughan tries; Clifford 3/5 goals) def. Wests Tigers 18 (Pakau 2, Peck tries; Tautaiolefua 3/3 goals)