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Match Report: NRLW Round 1 vs Eels

Wests Tigers have kicked off their inaugural NRLW season in style claiming an emphatic 36-8 victory over Parramatta Eels at CommBank Stadium.

Off the back of some fierce running from the forward’s and electric backline movement, Brett Kimmorley’s side erased an 8-4 first half deficit and kept their opponents scoreless in the second.

It took Wests Tigers just over five minutes to score their inaugural try in the NRLW, and it was through co-captain Botille Vette-Welsh on the end of a sweet backline movement.

Vette-Welsh burst through a hole from halfback Emily Curtain to score in her first game back following a 16-month hiatus through injury.

Parramatta’s winger Zali Fay grabbed a double thereafter, first outjumping Josie Lenaz to a bouncing ball, before being gifted space down the touchline to race away and double their lead.

Wests Tigers forward pack continued to press Parramatta’s goal line late in the first half, though some solid defence from the Eels maintained their 8-4 advantage at the half.

Former Australian Rugby 7s player Jakiya Whitfield impressed in her club debut, giving her side much needed yardage coming out of their end.

Forward Sarah Togatuki carried the team forward all game and was rewarded with a try after fending off two Eels defenders in a 30-metre dash to the line to put the visitors ahead for the first time.

NSW Under-19’s playmaker Losana Lutu made an instant impact off the bench, squaring up the defence to put Leianne Tufuga over.

Lutu had a hand in Tufuga's second try as well, delivering to Vette-Welsh who popped a ball to a wrapping Whitfield to extend the lead.

Both Rikeya Horne and Whitfield couldn’t be stopped in the game’s dying stages, using their blitzing pace to seal a 36-8 victory.

Wests Tigers head to Belmore Sports Ground to take on Cronulla Sharks on Sunday afternoon in Round 2.

Acknowledgement of Country

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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