It wasn’t the result Wests Tigers wanted, however coach Michael Maguire was proud with his players’ efforts against one of the elite teams in the competition.
Despite a 14-point loss to Penrith, Wests Tigers fought hard throughout the opening 40 minutes, and then managed to score the final two tries of the match.
“To see the boys fight and compete is something we need to make sure we take forward,” Maguire said after the game.
“If you play like that throughout a season, then you’re going to find yourself with a lot more wins — that’s something we need to take forward into where we go.”
Although Maguire was pleased with his side’s overall performance, he shared his disappointment with a patch of the match.
2021 Match Highlights: Rd.24, Panthers vs. Wests Tigers
“We had a 10-minute period after half-time that hurt us. We had a late penalty in a set and we didn’t regroup,” he said.
“We’ve had plenty of times where we’re I’ve sat in the press conference and talking about patches of games that we’ve hurt ourselves, and there’s probably another one there tonight.
“They’re a quality side and they know how to build the pressure. We need to learn how to do that.
“After half-time it was pretty obvious that they were going to come out and try to compete at the high level and for a period of time we just didn’t go with them.”
Big man in open space alert!
With experienced players Adam Doueihi (ACL) and James Tamou (foot) out through injury, it was an opportunity for a number of younger players to step up.
Jock Madden showed plenty of positive signs as he partnered Luke Brooks in the halves, while Stefano Utoikamanu continued to impress with strong carries and a try.
“Stefano stood up for us through the middle. He’s only young and he’s matched it with a lot of the players he’s faced this year,” the coach said.
“Young Jock Madden — I don’t think he’s played in a about 15 weeks and he was able to go out and compete.
“I’ve got a lot of junior players. The more they play together and be consistent, we’ll turn ourselves into a very competitive team.”
Match: Panthers v Wests Tigers
Round 24 -
Venue: Moreton Daily Stadium, Redcliffe