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Brooks field goal secures thrilling win for Wests Tigers

Wests Tigers have bounced back in a gritty contest to down the Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs 29-28 at Bankwest Stadium today.

Desperately needing to end a run of three straight defeats that left them on the outside looking in for a spot in the top eight, Michael Maguire's side revelled in the free-flowing conditions — running in four first half tries — before a stirring comeback from the visitors saw them level the contest in the second half.

In the end, it was a late field goal for the hosts that got the job done in the end, with Luke Brooks stepping up to land the killer blow.

It was a strong return to the side for Luke Garner, who bagged a first half double, while David Nofoaluma continued his career best year with a hand in several tries. 

Near untouchable Nofoaluma offloads for a Garner try


But perhaps the biggest highlight in terms of player performance was Jacob Liddle, who played close to an hour in his first game back from injury in over a year — chalking up over 75 metres and 40 tackles in a positive effort.

The result sees Maguire's men jump the Sea Eagles on the ladder in to ninth position ahead of next Saturday's huge clash against the two-time defending premiers Sydney Roosters at Leichhardt Oval.

It was a bright start for the hosts with Luciano Leilua continuing his career best season to send Moses Mbye over untouched after just six minutes, before the Bulldogs hit back through Nick Meaney off the back of a Jack Cogger break.

Having done the damage on the left edge early on, it was the right edge of Wests Tigers that broke the game open midway through the first half with a double to Garner and a 12th try of the year for David Nofoaluma in the space of eight minutes.

Nofoaluma gets a try of his own


Nofoaluma's classy four-pointer saw the winger Wests Tigers legend Robbie Farah with his 69th career try to move to third on the club's all-time top try-scorers list.

Seemingly in control of the contest in the shadows of half-time, a momentary lapse in concentration from the hosts would allow the Bulldogs back in the contest with Marcelo Montoya and Matt Doorey scoring in consecutive sets to cut Wests Tigers' lead to just six points at the break — a lead that didn't do justice to their dominance throughout the opening 40 minutes of the game.

After going close through Liddle in a crafty play close to the ruck, Wests Tigers would find themselves level again as Jeremy Marshall-King's surprise play on last tackle paved the way for Aiden Tolman to spin his way over.

Locked at 22-22 as the game entered the final quarter, Canterbury would suffer a blow with veteran playmaker Kieran Foran limping off with an ankle injury.

That blow wouldn't stop the visitors from completely a stunning comeback, however, with Marshall-King combining with Kerrod Holland on last tackle to keep the ball alive and put the Bulldogs in front for the first time all game.

Joey Leilua would set the match up for a grandstand finish with his four-pointer seven minutes from time, with Mbye converting from the sideline to level the scores.

In the end, it was a late field goal for the hosts that got the job done in the end, with Luke Brooks stepping up to land the killer blow.

Wests Tigers 29 (Garner 2, Mbye, Nofoaluma, J.Leilua tries; Mbye 4/5 goals; Brooks field goal) def. Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs 28 (Meaney, Montoya, Doorey, Tolman, Holland tries; Holland 4/5 goals) at Bankwest Stadium