Group 11 2019: Nyngan Tigers fight back to down Wellington Cowboys

Nyngan Tigers player-coach Justin Carney feels Group 11 fans won't get much better than what they did at Larkin Oval on Sunday.

Carney's Tigers came roaring back into the premiership conversation when downing a gallant Wellington Cowboys by two points in an enthralling contest.

The Tigers had an extra man for much of the contest after Cowboy Steve Gordon was sent off late in the first half for an alleged headbutt, but still they trailed for long periods.

However, a stellar four-try showing from young winger Clynton Edwards saw the Tigers rally and claim a 26-24 victory, moving to outright third in the process.

Carney was thrilled with the win and also the spectacle delivered for the bumper crowd in attendance.

"It was kind of neck-and-neck right throughout the game until the end there, and we eventually got over the line which was good," Carney said, before praising Wellington.

"They are a quality side. It's really good to see Wello as strong as they are, because they are good part of Group 11 and I've got a lot of mates there and it's good to see two small town sides there fight it out like that.

"It was the same in round one, it was a quality game and the same, real hard, tough, clean footy, so I don't think you can get much better than that in Group 11.

"It's good for both small towns and that's what country footy is about."


After a minute's silence in honour of John Rope, an "icon of the town" who passed away during the week, the Tigers jumped out of the blocks and led 10 after tries to Carney and Edwards.

It was 16-6 after Edwards nabbed his second and while Wellington had Gordon marched late in the half they still clawed their way back and went into the sheds with an 18-16 lead.

That margin grew to eight points after the Cowboys scored first following the break but two more tries for Edwards, the second with 14 minutes of the game remaining, saw the hosts take back the lead and control of the game.

The Tigers' defence stood firm late on and they slowed things down on the way to getting the points, much to the delight of the vocal Nyngan faithful.

"I think Clynt Edwards, he was a standout. Individual brilliance, all of his tries were pretty classy," Carney said.

"I thought the Merrit boys (Josh and Jai), they're the captains of this side and they led us really well and directed us around the park.

"Jacob Neill, Loma (Atuau) does his usual, and I think it was all around quality effort.

"(Ash) 'Flash' Widders, he's just everywhere which is good to see because he's starting to build confidence and he'll start scoring tries. It was all around a team effort and it was a good feeling out there because it was a good side."

The Tigers' reserve grade side also won again, cementing its spot in the top two on the ladder and ensuring the positive mood around the club grows.

"Everyone could play first grade, it all comes down to commitments," Carney said of the club.

"We've got to pick the best side each week, which is really difficult for me at the minute because reserve grade are winning as well.

"We've got a lot of people who work on night shift and in the mines, so it's a tough decision. But at the end of the day you've got to pick the best side every week."

Carney also took time to mention the minute's silence before the game and the lasting impact of 'Lurk' Rope.

" It was a big day for us here at Nyngan today," he said.

"Lurky Rope passing away during the week, he was an icon of the town and really involved with Nyngan even when I was a junior here, he was always here.

"We all loved him at the club so it was an honour for him today as well for the club and for us as well."

The other match on the weekend saw the Parkes Spacemen move up to fourth after downing the Narromine Jets in a close contest at Cale Oval.

The Spacemen escaped with the points after scoring a 28-24 win.