See where Wests Tigers stand in all three grades after a thrilling weekend of action saw the Club go undefeated in Round 25 with two gutsy wins and a draw.
Despite the trip across the Tasman to face the New Zealand Warriors in both Holden Cup and NRL — and missing several key players in both grades — Wests Tigers pulled off a special result in first-grade to keep their finals hopes alive with a comeback 36-24 win.
That result was one better than the young guns earlier in the day, who came from 12-0 down at half-time to record a 24-24 draw with a try next to the posts right on full-time.
Meanwhile, back at Hunter Stadium in Newcastle, Wests Tigers Intrust Super Premiership side blooded five Holden Cup players but were still able to record a top four spot with a come-from-behind 30-28 win over the Knights in the final regular season game.
See where Wests Tigers stand in all three grades heading into a massive Round 26!
Round 25 Results, Standings
Record: Played 25, Won 11, Lost 12, Drawn 0, Bye 2
Position: 9th (26 points)
Last Result: Won 36-24 vs. New Zealand Warriors at Mount Smart Stadium
Top Try-Scorers: James Tedesco (14), David Nofoaluma (14), Kevin Naiqama (11)
Remaining Fixtures: Round 26: Home vs. Canberra Raiders (3rd)
Comment: Wests Tigers needed to win away in New Zealand to keep their finals hopes alive — a feat which they achieved in remarkable fashion against the odds as they came from behind to win 36-24. The equation is now simple heading into the final round in regards to their finals chances. Wests Tigers need the Gold Coast Titans (8th) to lose to the North Queensland Cowboys (4th) on Saturday night in Townsville, and then defeat the Canberra Raiders (3rd) the following day at Leichhardt Oval to sneak into eighth spot and qualify for the finals for the first time in the Club’s history since 2011.
Record: Played 25, Won 12, Lost 8, Drawn 3, Bye 2
Position: 6th (31 points)
Last Result: Drew 24-24 vs. New Zealand Warriors at Mount Smart Stadium
Top Try-Scorers: Obed Karwhin (12), Veiru Mapesone (9), Jacob Liddle (9)
Remaining Fixtures: Round 26: Home vs. Canberra Raiders (8th)
Comment: They might have guaranteed a top eight spot, but the prospect of finishing inside the top four is a tough one for Willie Peters’ side heading into the final round. Not only do they need to beat the Canberra Raiders (8th) on Sunday afternoon at Leichhardt Oval, they also need the Sydney Roosters (5th) to lose to the Brisbane Broncos (10th), the St. George-Illawarra Dragons (3rd) to lose to the Newcastle Knights (9th) and the Parramatta Eels (7th) to lose to the New Zealand Warriors (14th).
INTRUST SUPER PREMIERSHIP
Record: Played 25, Won 14, Lost 8, Drawn 0, Bye 3
Position: 3rd (34 points)
Last Result: Won 30-28 vs. Newcastle Knights at Hunter Stadium
Top Try-Scorers: Josh Addo-Carr (18), Watson Heleta (11), Chance Peni (11)
Next Fixture: Preliminary Final vs. Illawarra Cutters at UOW Jubilee Oval
Comment: After securing a top four finish with a win over the Newcastle Knights in their final game, Wests Tigers will look to put one foot in the grand final when they take on the Illawarra Cutters in a Preliminary Final this Saturday. Win, and they’ll get a week off, with their next game a Qualifying Final. Should they lose, they’ll face off against the winner of the Wyong Roos and Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs clash on Saturday in an Elimination Final the following week in a sudden-death game to stay in the competition.
Round 26 Fixtures
Brisbane Broncos (5th) vs. Sydney Roosters (15th)
Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs (6th) vs. South Sydney Rabbitohs (13th)
St. George-Illawarra Dragons (11th) vs. Newcastle Knights (16th)
North Queensland Cowboys (4th) vs. Gold Coast Titans (8th)
Melbourne Storm (1st) vs. Cronulla Sharks (2nd)
Wests Tigers (9th) vs. Canberra Raiders (3rd)
New Zealand Warriors (10th) vs. Parramatta Eels (14th)
Penrith Panthers (7th) vs. Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles (12th)
Brisbane Broncos (10th) vs. Sydney Roosters (5th)
Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs (13th) vs. South Sydney Rabbitohs (15th)
St. George-Illawarra Dragons (3rd) vs. Newcastle Knights (9th)
North Queensland Cowboys (2nd) vs. Gold Coast Titans (12th)
Melbourne Storm (11th) vs. Cronulla Sharks (4th)
Wests Tigers (6th) vs. Canberra Raiders (8th)
New Zealand Warriors (14th) vs. Parramatta Eels (7th)
Penrith Panthers (1st) vs. Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles (16th)
INTRUST SUPER PREMIERSHIP — Finals, Wk.1
Illawarra Cutters (2nd) vs. Wests Tigers (3rd)
Mounties RLFC (1st) vs. Newtown Jets (4th)
Wyong Roos (6th) vs. Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs (7th)
New Zealand Warriors (5th) vs. Penrith Panthers (8th)
INTRUST SUPER CUP — Finals, Wk.1
Townsville Blackhawks (3rd) vs. Easts Tigers (6th)
PNG Hunters (4th) vs. Sunshine Coast Falcons (5th)