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“That’s embarrassing”: Tigers slammed for losing the unlosable against Dragons


The Wests Tigers were left red-faced on Sunday after losing the unlosable to the St George Illawarra Dragons.

Leading 22-16 with less than eight minutes left, Junior Pauga played at a short drop-out inside the 10 metres, allowing the Dragons to march down the field as Jackson Ford tied up the scores.

Then with less than two minutes left, Asu Kepaoa was sin-binned for a high shot, allowing Zac Lomax a chance to slot a penalty goal as the clock wound down, an opportunity he’d duly convert.

The 22-24 defeat consigned the Tigers to their first ever wooden spoon as Gold Coast won later in the day, and interim coach Brett Kimmorley admitted post-game that his players mustn’t “know the rules” given the nature of the blunder.

SEN’s Andrew Voss described Kimmorley’s comments as perhaps the “most embarrassing” he’s ever heard a coach admit after a loss.

“Poor old Brett Kimmorley,” Voss said on SEN 1170 Breakfast.

“Someone go up and give Brett a hug, he questioned that perhaps some of his players don’t know the rules.

“I’m here to say, that’s probably the most embarrassing thing a coach has ever had to concede after a game.

“That’s embarrassing that he has had to make that point in front of a group of professional athletes.

“But it’s the truth, Junior Pauga’s penalty yesterday, for those who missed it, short drop-out Dragons, Tigers are leading by six, the ball only goes five metres and Junior Pauga goes inside that zone and comes into contact with the ball.

“If they don’t make contact, the Tigers get a penalty in front of the posts and go eight in front, game over.”

Rugby league great Greg Alexander was equally as shocked as Voss, adding that he thought the Dragons had no chance of winning until Pauga’s mistake.

“They aren’t consigned with the spoon as they are now,” Alexander said.

“They stay alive, they’re a chance, the Titans went on to beat Newcastle comfortably, they went to five wins.

“The Tigers would’ve won that game without a doubt, watching the game, I thought the Dragons had exhausted everything.

“I remember saying in the green room yesterday watching at Fox Sports, ‘That’s it, the Dragons can’t win from here, they won’t get up the other end and score a try unless something remarkable happens’.

“And on cue, Junior Pauga touches the ball inside the 10, I was at Brookvale Oval watching junior footy on Saturday, they’re 12, 13, 14 (years old), they know you can’t touch the ball if it doesn’t go the 10 metres.”

The Wests Tigers will face the resurgent Canberra Raiders in their last game of the season next Sunday at Leichhardt Oval.

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