Sport

Experienced trio get Norths home after poor start

RELIABLE: Norths half Steve West helped steady the ship in the win over the Cobras.
RELIABLE: Norths half Steve West helped steady the ship in the win over the Cobras. Kate Czerny

RUGBY LEAGUE: You can't put a price on experience and Norths Tigers proved that in their away 50-26 win over Eastern Cobras in the Ipswich A Grade clash on Sunday.

The Cobras started like a house on fire and led 16-nil before experienced Norths trio of Josh Roberts, Steve West and Chris Scanlan inspired a comeback.

The tested, tried and true Tigers trifecta of stars didn't let Norths' coach Anthony O'Brien down in a testing situation.

"We found ourselves down 16-nil and it was just the experience of Josh, Westy and Chris Scanlan that got us back in the game,” O'Brien said.

"Then we started completing sets and scoring tries.

"Those three are hugely important to the team dynamics with their talk and leadership.

"Chris Scanlan had been playing lock but I have moved him into the second row because we have a few injuries.”

Fulback Drew Robinson, second-rower Matt Fairhurst and bench utility Lewis Smith came off the bench and scored doubles in outstanding displays.

The Tigers were also boosted by the return of hooker Chris Porter.

"Lewis is a halfback but we had Chris coming back back from injury and I knew he wouldn't get through a whole game,” O'Brien said.

"Lewis came on and replaced him at hooker and did a great job.

"Drew Robinson at fullback has been great for us the last two years and turns up every week and puts in a wholehearted effort.

"I am really happy to have a bloke like him in our side.”

O'Brien said the Cobras could hold their heads high after an impressive display.

Cobras fullback Godfrey Okot was awarded the referees' three best and fairest points after scoring a hat-trick.

"He has a fair bit of strength about him and he has speed and good feet,” O'Brien said.

"He had opportunities and he took them.

"Their five-eighth and half put in a good kicking game and they have some big forwards.

"But in the end it was our experience and class that got us a victory.

"The Cobras are in their first season in A Grade and they will be strong in a couple of years.”

The Tigers play West End this weekend and O'Brien isn't taking the Bulldogs lightly.

"They have improved since the start of the season and it is not an easy game by any means,” he said.

"There are no easy games in this competition.”

Topics:  eastern cobras ipswich rugby league josh roberts norths tigers steve west