A player breaking a leg once, is bad enough in the game of rugby league. A player breaking their leg twice in successive seasons, is absolutely tragic, and for young Cowboys back-rower and Origin hopeful Tariq Sims, that is exactly what unfortunately happened.
As the Cowboys won the game 30-28 at Dairy Farmers Stadium, the win was marred by the season-ending injury to Tariq Sims – who broke the same leg that he did last year, after colliding with Panthers second-rower, Cameron Ciraldo.
The Cowboys, without their Origin quartet in James Tamou, Brent Tate, Matthew Scott and Johnathan Thurston – had everyone tipping them to lose.
The experience of Matt Bowen, Gavin Cooper and Glenn Hall however, got the club over the line – as Panthers will be ruing missed opportunities.
Despite the win, Cowboys coach Neil Henry said that it was difficult to celebrate, in light of the tragic injury to Tariq Sims.
“He’s a young kid and he’s got plenty of footy ahead of him and obviously we’re going to be missing him for a while.”
Henry also said that the only positive for the game, was his side claiming the victory.
“It was a fairly scrappy game but the consolation is we’ve got two points and it wasn’t a great performance.
“But Penrith, they kept coming and you can’t fault that. They were very strong in the middle and nearly got us in the end.”
Panthers coach Ivan Cleary was not at all happy, as he was angry with the way his side lost the game and had beaten themselves, after losing the match in the last few minutes.
“Whether it was penalties and at the start of the second half a few really cheap errors, conceding tries on the last tackle … and we probably only needed a decent share of possession in that second half and we would have been okay,” Cleary said.