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By the Numbers: Round 1
It was a record-breaking night for Wests Tigers as they came from behind to down the Sydney Roosters at ANZ Stadium 10-8 with a thrilling last-minute try.
Corey Thompson's 78th minute acrobatic finish was followed up by an even more incredible moment shortly after when Tuimoala Lolohea showed terrific composure to land the sideline conversion and hand Wests Tigers the most unlikely of victories over the heavy competition favourites.
Take a look at some of the standout numbers to come from the win in this week's By the Numbers.
Not since 2011 had Wests Tigers tasted victory against the Sydney Roosters — the longest active head-to-head streak between any two teams in the competition with 10 straight wins for the Tricolours.
But then Saturday's game happened.
Without playmaker Josh Reynolds, it was a never-say-die performance from Ivan Cleary's side that ended the streak at 10 wins — ironically the exact same number of points scored by the team on the day.
The result marked the first time the Roosters had lost to Wests Tigers at ANZ Stadium in 2006, and the first time in 13 games for Mitchell Aubusson that he walked away from the clash without victory.
The eight points conceded by Wests Tigers are the fewest ever against the Roosters.
The first home game of the year is always a special occasion for any team, and the legacy continues to build for Wests Tigers as to their performance in their home game season openers.
Incredibly, the joint-venture haven't lost a home season opener in over a decade (since 2007), with only the Melbourne Storm holding a better record in that department — undefeated in Round 1 since 2005.
It was the number on everyone's lips before the game as Benji Marshall marked his first game back for the club in 1646 with a vintage performance that ensured victory for Ivan Cleary's side.
Perhaps not expecting to play the full 80 minutes after initially being named on the bench, Marshall showed a level head right throughout the contest and played a crucial role in steering the side home — particularly when Luke Brooks was sent to the sin-bin early in the second half for a professional foul.
Elijah Taylor's tackling feats are no surprise to Wests Tigers fans (or rugby league fans in general), but the Kiwi international showed once again how important he is for the side with his effort on Saturday night.
Taylor led all players with 53 tackles at a 93% completion rate — chalking up a taggering 20 more tackles than the next best in his team with Robbie Rochow contributing 33.
What's more, Taylor did it in 13 minutes less, playing 67 of the possible 80.
Round 1 always provides plenty of firsts — Corey Thompson grabbing his first try in Wests Tigers colours while four other players joined Thompson in playing their first game for the club — but we're going to particularly highlight here the effort of Pita Godinet in playing his first match at hooker.
And not just for Wests Tigers, we mean ever, in the NRL.
Saturday's game marked the first time that Godinet has started an NRL match at hooker, having previously been used off the interchange bench or at halfback or five-eighth in his previous stints.
Godinet's performance didn't necessarily stand out like others on the night, but he more than held his own and did his job — missing just one tackle and not making any errors against a high-octane Roosters pack.
Here's hoping the year ahead provides plenty more firsts for Wests Tigers!