Waratahs thrash weakened Hay

ON FIRE: Waratahs winger Viliami Ngu scored a hat-trick against Hay.

ON FIRE: Waratahs winger Viliami Ngu scored a hat-trick against Hay.

WARATAHS Tigers warmed up for the Group 20 finals with a dominant 50-8 victory over fellow play-off side Hay at Exies Oval on Saturday night.

With their spot in the top three secure, a relaxed Tigers ran in 10 tries against the injury-ravaged Magpies, who went into the game with only 14 players.

Waratahs winger Viliami Ngu finished with a hat-trick, while fullback Johnny Teleaga and centre Shorne Ngu bagged doubles.

Lock Chris Hanneman was named man of the match for his workaholic performance, with second-rower Lorenco Talifi also earning plaudits for his tireless efforts in defence.

While happy to see his club win, Tigers secretary Mark Jaffrey said Waratahs' first-half performance was unimpressive.

"They didn't play as well as they did last week (against West Wyalong)," he said.

"They made a lot of mistakes in the first half and the ball wasn't getting out wide.

"But everything seemed to click in the second half and the boys were able to score seven tries."

Jaffrey, however, believes the Tigers will have to improve their execution significantly when they travel to take on defending premier Tullibigeal-Lakes United in the first week of the play-offs.

"Both games we played against them this year, there was only six points in it," Jaffrey said.

"There's not much between the sides, but Lakes are always hard to beat at home.

"The team (Tigers) will have to lift a little, but it's always nice to have that second chance (in the finals).

"That way if you come up short the first time, you can still come back."

Jaffrey said the Tigers had already exceeded the club's expectations by making the finals.

"We've probably punched above our weight all year," he said.

"But now the boys realise they are competitive and will have to keep producing their best for the rest of these games."

In good news for the Tigers, Jaffrey said the club had no major injury concerns ahead of the finals.