Sat August 18, 2012 12:00am
WESTS Tigers coach Tim Sheens said there were chinks in Canterbury's armour - and there were. As for Superman - AKA Ben Barba - he was largely kept quiet, although he did manage to produce another unforgettable moment in an unforgettable season.
As hard as the Tigers tried, though, and as good as they did in shackling Barba, they still couldn't find a way to beat the league-leading Bulldogs. In the end it took Canterbury 89 minutes to find a way to win in controversial circumstances. But win it did as it extended its winning streak to 12 games and strengthened its grip on the minor premiership.
The hero for Canterbury was centre Krisnan Inu, who continued a remarkable story that began when he joined the club mid-season. Last year, when he was playing with the Warriors, he scored the try which ended the Tigers' season.
Last night, he kicked a field goal with 58 seconds to go in golden point, which secured the victory.
It was rough justice for the Tigers. They refused to lie down last night as they went so close to making good on their coach's promise.
In the end, it wasn't enough, as Inu's heroics and some controversial officiating changed the game. Should Newcastle and Canberra win, the Tigers could drop as low as 10th by the end of the weekend. They have games remaining against Sydney Roosters and Melbourne. They need to find a win or the top eight may be beyond them. "I think people would agree we were pretty hard done by," Sheens said.
No such problems for the Bulldogs. As usual, Barba had moments of brilliance, none better than the try he created in the opening half when he fielded a bomb, ran backwards and then left Tigers players clutching at air.