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Match Report: Pre-Season Challenge vs Warriors

A young Wests Tigers outfit has suffered 48-12 loss to the New Zealand Warriors at Mount Smart Stadium in the first week of the NRL Pre-Season Challenge.

The visitors trailed 14-nil at half time before the floodgates opened in the final ten minutes of the match when the Warriors ran in four unanswered tries.

It was a slick start for the visitors with Jake Simpkin controlling the ruck and rolling his forwards, and fullback Charlie Staines, through the middle.

Back to back sets then saw the Warriors apply pressure in good field position, only for left-winger Marcelo Montoya to spill the pill with the line wide open.

Wests Tigers were again caught short on their right edge when Montoya opened the scoring at the ten minute mark, before left edge forward Jackson Ford charged onto a short ball from close range to go in untouched.

Montoya crossed for his second try 13 minutes out from half time, charging though a valiant defensive effort from Staines, to establish a 14-nil half time lead.

The home side edged further ahead five minutes into the second half when five eighth Luke Metcalf sliced through the middle from 40m out to score adjacent to the posts.

Montoya then crossed for his hat trick when the visitors were again caught short on the right edge, to make it 26-nil before a brief fightback began.

Wests Tigers opened their account midway through the second half with a slick piece of play which saw Brandon Wakeham, Jahream Bula and Justin Matamua combine, for Trey Peni to finish it off.

The away side made it back-to-back tries two minutes later when skipper Stefano Utoikamanu barged over from close range after bouncing off two defenders and the goal post padding to score.

A Peni dropped ball was then swooped on by Warriors left centre Viliami Vailea, who ran 30 metres to score his teams sixth try of the night. 

The damage to the scoreline continued late on with the Warriors running in another three tries including a second for Vailea who scored on the stroke of full time.

Next up for Wests Tigers is the team's final trial match against Canberra Raiders at Belmore Sports Ground on Sunday 19th February.

Wests Tigers will next return to New Zealand to face the Warriors for the club's home game in Hamilton on Saturday 12th August.

Wests Tigers New Zealand Memberships are available here 

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Wests Tigers respect and honour the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.

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