Marshall lashes Tigers after worst half in club history

Scott Bailey |

Wests Tigers coach Benji Marshall has lambasted his team after their worst-ever half of NRL action.
Wests Tigers coach Benji Marshall has lambasted his team after their worst-ever half of NRL action.

Benji Marshall has labelled the worst half in Wests Tigers’ history as unacceptable, warning heads may need to roll after their 56-14 flogging from St George Illawarra.

The Tigers went from 14-12 up at halftime on Friday to conceding seven unanswered tries in Wollongong, on another dark and sorry night for the joint-venture.

The 44 points the Tigers conceded after the break was the most the club have ever conceded in a half, and the worst of any team in the NRL in more than two years.

So bad were the Tigers, they only got to a last-tackle kick twice after the break, as they completed at 36 per cent and had 24 play-the-balls.

Marshall was livid afterwards at the performance, as the club slumped to a ninth straight loss with their season all but over.

“I feel sorry for fans to have to watch that capitulation in the second half,” Marshall said. 

“I actually do. I can imagine how frustrating it is, putting your hard-earned into it.

“To have 20 per cent of the ball and have as many errors as what we did. Schoolboy errors, to be honest. Unacceptable.

“I’ll say it again. If the actions don’t change, then the players have to change. It’s unacceptable.”

Marshall conceded that the club’s back-to-back wins over Cronulla and Parramatta inflated expectations of the team, beyond their actual level.

Their ill-discipline continues to be an issue, with Jayden Sullivan’s sin-bin marking the Tigers’ ninth of the season.

“I cannot talk about discipline enough,” Marshall said. 

“The whole week we talked about discipline this week. It’s unacceptable. There’s no excuse.

“It is just hurting us. We find someone to get sin-binned every week. 

“Give away silly penalties, we lose our head and unfortunately, we’re in a position where we can’t do that to ourselves.”

In further bad news for the Tigers, Alex Twal left WIN Stadium in a moon boot after suffering a foot injury, and was due for scans on Saturday.

Adam Doueihi
Adam Doueihi is set to make his return to NSW Cup action after injury. (Dan Himbrechts/AAP PHOTOS)

Adam Doueihi will make a long-awaited return from an ACL injury in NSW Cup next week, while Aidan Sezer can return from suspension at halfback. 

Regardless, Marshall insisted there had been improvement this year from the back-to-back wooden-spooners.

“We’re on a trajectory of improvement,” he said. 

“And although it was terrible tonight, there’s definitely been improvements in parts of the game.

“At the moment we’re a professional team that can play for 20 minutes at a time. We can’t play for 40.

“We’re on a path for building for our future, especially with our local juniors, that we need to stick to.”