Slick City too good for Country
The City Origin side has run out 44 points to 30 victors over the Country Origin side in Tamworth, with three Sharks featuring in the contest.
In an exciting, high-scoring affair played in front of more than 8,000 fans in Tamworth, it was the City side who proved too good for their highly-fancied opponents.
Sharks representatives filled three of four available halves positions in the respective line ups, and it was Jack Bird and James Maloney of Country who asserted themselves on the clash early doors.
The pair combined to send Boyd Cordner to cross for the game’s first points, before both men earned their side back-to-back repeat sets of six, from forced drop outs.
In the act of looking to fire another Country runner across the stripe, a Bird pass was intercepted by City’s Ryan Matterson, who set off down field with only daylight in front of him.
Matterson – although unable to go the distance – had his side in a great position to post points, which they did.
South Sydney’s Aaron Gray finished a well-worked backline move to score, in which City half Chad Townsend had a big hand in seeing the winger cross and level the scores at 6.
Gray bagged a double before very nearly sealing a first half hat-trick, but the City side would find their though through Kyle Lovett who strolled through under the posts on the brink of the break.
The Souths winger wouldn’t have to wait long into the second half to chalk up his treble though, crossing to score his third of the evening just five minutes after the change of ends.
Nathan Peats and Josh Mansour crossed in quick succession to extend the City out to a commanding 34-6, before the Country men hit back to ignite the contest once more.
The Dragons’ Euan Aitken and Jack De Belin crossed for back-to-back tries to get Country back within 16, but the fight-back was short lived as City again went in for points.
Aiden Sezar’s cross-field kick to Gray saw the winger claim his fourth try of the match, and the pivot converted from out wide to send the City side to a 40-18 front.
The Roosters’ Ryan Matterson scored his first representative try to help grow the City lead, before Maloney restored some respect to the score line with a double late on in the contest.
Maloney's tries - although well deserved - were nothing more than a consolation, with the three Sharks coming through the game unscathed as per preliminary reports.
COUNTRY – 30
(Tries: Cordner, Aitken, De Belin, Maloney (2) | Goals: Croker (5/5)
Def. By CITY – 44
(Tries: Gray (4), Lovett, Peats, Mansour, Matterson| Goals: Sezar (6/8)