Tigers legend Roach backs finals system - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Tigers legend Roach backs finals system

By Steve Jancetic 13/09/2010 07:39:58 PM Comments (0)

Balmain great Steve Roach claims Wests Tigers only have themselves to blame for their predicament - facing a nightmare trip to the nation's capital to face a red-hot Canberra in a sudden death NRL semi-final.

While Tigers skipper Robbie Farah questioned the fairness of a finals system forcing his side - which finished third on the NRL ladder - to travel to the home ground of the seventh-placed Raiders in the second week of the finals, Roach said the McIntyre system rewarded winners.

"If they'd have won no-one would be whingeing, if you finish third or fourth and you win no-one cares," said Roach, who played 185 games for Balmain from 1982-92.

"They got beat and if you get beat there's got to be some sort of punishment - the other side won so it doesn't matter where you finish.

"It's all about winning."

The Tigers were in danger of becoming the highest seed to ever be eliminated in the first week of the finals after giving up a 15-2 lead with just 14 minutes remaining to lose 19-15 to the Sydney Roosters in a dramatic golden-point verdict on Saturday night.

They were spared a quick exit when St George Illawarra beat Manly in the last of the qualifying finals on Sunday, with the Tigers' reward for staying alive a trip to the nation's capital to face a Raiders side that has won six straight games.

Despite enjoying a good recent record in Canberra, with three wins from their last four trips to Canberra Stadium, Farah told the Nine Network that teams finishing in the top four deserved a fairer deal.

"I just think there's not enough reward for the minor premiership or finishing in the top four," Farah said.

"There's no way, if you're playing a team that finished below you during the regular season, that they should get home ground advantage in the semi-finals."

Asked whether there was enough reward for the top four sides, Roach said:

"You get your chance.

"You've got to deal with the system you've got, everyone knows the rules."

Normally tough to beat at home, Canberra Stadium hasn't exactly been the fortress it usually is for the Raiders with seven wins from their 12 homes games in 2010.

That record is mainly due to their slow start to the season, but they have turned it around in recent months to be unbeaten in their last five home games.

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