These days, the Wests Tigers wins usually come on the back of attacking style and flair – but coach Tim Sheens praised his side after winning 23-16 over North Queensland in a grinding win for his troops.
In a match littered with injury and ill-discipline, the Wests Tigers withstood a strong second half Cowboys fightback to hang on and win by 7 points.
It was the usual suspects involved for Wests, with Marshall at the forefront of his sides spark.
Even more crushing than losing for the North Queensland side is the loss of halfback Jonathan Thurston for possibly the rest of the year. The leading no.7 in the game now set to miss Origin duties as well as a good majority of his sides season.
The loss of Thurston will heap even more pressure on Neil Henry and the Cows, surely forcing the respected coach to continue to look at the youth policy as the club struggles to get any consistency.
Cowboys forward Luke O’Donnell always fires up against his old club, but could find himself in hot water after a wreckless tackle and some poor discipline towards the whistle blowers.
In a game with many injuries, it wasn’t just JT struck down. Experienced hooker Aaron Payne looks to have an ankle complaint and will miss weeks for North Queensland – and for the Tigers, the talented Tim Molzten could miss the rest of the year after seriously injuring his right knee.
Moltzen has been dynamic for the Tigers and will surely be a huge loss to them.
While not as serious, Wests prop Todd Payten also suffered a calf injury that may rule him out for next week. The veteran might not be fashionable, but Payten too is an integral part of the unpredictable Wests outfit.
The Tigers now sit atop the NRL ladder with the likes of the Dragons, Storm and Titans. Having only lost 1 game so far and having the ability to score points at will, the Tigers after some impressive off-season recruiting look well positioned for an assault on the NRL finals after not getting a look in since 2005.
Next week the Cowboys are away to the Knights, in a clash where both teams are desperate to clutch start their stuttering seasons.
For the Wests Tigers, they host the Bulldogs and will fancy their chances given the inconsistency of the Dogs so far in 2010.