The Roar
The Roar


Tigers turn on each other in crushing loss

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19th June, 2021
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Left to their own devices by their disgusted coach Michael Maguire, Wests Tigers teammates turned on each other as Melbourne completed a 66-16 NRL rout on the Sunshine Coast.

Revealing the discord, shattered captain James Tamou admits the joint venture must overcome “underlying issues” if they are to turn around their season after imploding in the 12 tries-to-three thumping on Saturday night.

The Storm piled on five tries in the first 15 minutes before the Tigers had completed a set as they cruised to a 40-0 halftime lead at Sunshine Coast Stadium.

Maguire was so livid he stormed out of the dressing room with his support staff in tow at the halftime break, leaving his stunned players on their own to work out a solution.

Instead of coming together, Tamou admitted the Tigers players began to unravel as the Storm kept piling on the points despite Melbourne being reduced to 14 men by injury and forward Nelson Asofa-Solomona’s 66th minute sin-binning.

“Near the end there, we were starting to get at each other, and I think that’s the last thing we need at the moment,” Tamou told Fox League.

“Start pointing the finger, only the soft ones do that.

“We need to be strong, we need to come together, we need to sort this out ourselves.

“I think as the captain and the leaders of this side, it’s up to us to sort out. We’ve got to come together first before we fix anything.”


The Tigers had planned to emerge as a tight unit after enjoying a two-day team bonding stay at nearby Noosa in the lead-up to the Storm clash.

Instead, they looked like strangers as the Storm tore them apart from the outset, crossing seven times in the first half alone.

The Tigers (5-10 record) have slipped to 14th and are at risk of being two wins outside the eight following Round 15 after conceding 106 points and missing a total of 85 tackles in their last two matches.

“I think there are a lot of underlying issues that we’ve got to sort out, that started last week against Parramatta (40-12 loss),” Tamou said.

Asked about Maguire’s halftime walkout, Tamou said: “I love Madge. He just said, ‘it’s up to us, we dug this hole now get ourselves out of it’.

“Some of the young boys actually spoke up, which was really refreshing.

“(But) the fact is…it’s going to take everyone in this side to sort it out.”

Maguire claimed he “didn’t say anything at halftime”.


“They knew what they needed to do. They are men. They spoke about it themselves,” he said.

Asked what he would say to Tigers fans after their horror loss, Maguire said: “We learn a lot from the performance that was played in front of us.

“You have to learn how to stop opposition’s momentum and you do that through your defence.”

Meanwhile, Tigers bench forward Shawn Blore (ankle) is expected to miss a couple of games.