Tigers lose in NRL, Marshall injured - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Tigers lose in NRL, Marshall injured

By Wayne Heming 07/04/2006 11:12:49 PM Comments (0)

Distraught Wests Tigers star Benji Marshall faces two months on the sidelines after dislocating his shoulder in Friday night's 32-12 NRL loss to North Queensland.

Marshall, who was put on report by referee Steve Clark for high tackle in the 19th minute on Cowboy Justin Smith, left the field in the dying minutes after injuring his right shoulder trying to tackle heavyweight prop Carl Webb.

He was in tears as he reached the Tigers' dressing room.

It was just his second game after returning from a fractured cheek bone sustained in round one.

Marshall had rushed back for the opening NRL encounter after offseason shoulder surgery and Friday night's recurrence rules him out of the Anzac Day Test for New Zealand.

Tigers coach Tim Sheens empathised for Marshall but stressed his team must no dwell on the setback and must concentrate on playing footy.

"I feel for the kid ... it's part of footy," said Sheens.

"It's part of footy. Our medical staff will take care of it (Marshall's shoulder) and I can't sit here and cry about it and neither is he.

"I'm not trying to be cold about I'm just saying don't ask us to stop and cry about because we've got a season in front of us and we've got to get on with."

Sheens was fuming over the penalties handed out by referee Steve Clark after being on the wrong end of a 14-8 count.

Clark marched Tigers centre Paul Whatuira for 10 minutes for a professional foul in the 35th minute.

Veteran Cowboy winger Matt Sing scored his 153rd career try off a beautiful Johnathan Thurston kick while the Tigers were down to 12 men.

"Our discipline and our penalty count with the referee is obviously an issue for us," said Sheens.

"I've got an issue with him (Clark) ... against Canterbury it was the same thing so we're going to thrash it out in the right channels which I will.

"We gave away six penalties in a row when they were back on the heels. It would appear we gave away every penalty in the game today.

"We gave away three penalties with the ball in hand, you don't see that too often."

Cowboys coach Graham Murray said Thurston's performance was further evidence he was up to playing Origin and Test football despite reports this week he wasn't being considered by Australian selectors.

Thurston, who scored a clever try and kicked six goals from seven shots, dedicated the club's record breaking fifth straight win, in which he contributed 16 points, to his brother Robert who had a birthday on Friday.

"He's a special talent, a brilliant player" said Murray who is aware he will confront his key playmaker in the Origin series when he coaches NSW.

"He had to enhance his prospects again tonight."

Murray was asked about reports earlier in week which said Thurston was not in the Test selector's thoughts.

The Cowboys coach said Thurston had taken the comments in his stride.

"I can only answer your questions he said, and he's certainly up to it."

The victory was sweet for the Cowboys who lost last year's grand final to the Tigers and were also beaten 50-6 by them in the regular season.

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