Wests Tigers have gone down to the New Zealand Warriors 26-20 in a tight but disappointing contest tonight at the Sydney Cricket Ground.
Despite holding a 14-8 lead at the break, Michael Maguire's side were unable to find anything in the second half to preserve their lead, with errors and ill-discipline allowing the visitors to run in three straight tries to claim the two points.
The side's second consecutive loss after going down to Parramatta last week, Wests Tigers will remain outside the top eight for Round 12 — needing to bounce back next Saturday when they travel north to face the Newcastle Knights.
Wests Tigers got off to a perfect start when co-captain Moses Mbye collected a great ball down the left edge from Luciano Leilua to slide past the defence and score. The home side would double their advantage shortly after when Adam Doueihi sent David Nofoaluma over in the opposite corner — the winger showing his acrobatic skills to remain in the field of play and bag his 11th try of the season.
The two tries didn’t go without New Zealand fighting back, with Karl Lawton barging over from close range before a penalty goal levelled the match.
2020 Match Highlights: Rd.12, Wests Tigers vs. Warriors
Wests Tigers would take a lead in to the sheds, however, after a clever run from Sam McIntyre gave the forward his second career try and the home side a six-point advantage at the break.
That lead would be short-lived, however, as a second half double from Peta Hiku pushed the visitors in to the lead for the first time before an error from Tommy Talau gifted Tohu Harris a simple four-pointer to stretch the lead to 12.
Seemingly down and out in the contest having seen their lead evaporate on two occasions, Maguire's men would hit back courtesy of a clever cut-out from Benji Marshall; Talau atoning for his earlier error with a clever sideline finish.
Mbye would convert from the sideline with five minutes remaining to cut the Warriors lead to just one score, but it would be too little too late for the home side as Todd Payten's side hung on to claim their fourth win of the year.
New Zealand Warriors 26 (Hiku 2, Lawton, Harris tries; Nikorima 5/5 goals) def. Wests Tigers 20 (Mbye, Nofoaluma, McIntyre, Talau tries; Mbye 1/2 goals, Marshall 1/1, Doueihi 0/1 goals) at Sydney Cricket Ground