Gundagai survives Young's gutsy second half comeback | Photos

Young has slipped to its second straight defeat in round two of this year's Group Nine competition.

Despite an improved second half, the Cherrypickers were edged by defending premiers Gundagai Tigers 38-30 on Sunday at Alfred Oval.

Young reduced a halftime deficit of 22 points to eight at full-time, the Pickers scoring four tries back-to-back between the 50th and 70th minute in a mammoth revival.

A late try for the Tigers sealed the Gundagai victory.

Young's coach Roy Jewitt was pleased with the second half, but conceded that his side needs to start better.

Gundagai captain Luke Berkrey scored two tries in the Tigers first win of 2019.

Gundagai captain Luke Berkrey scored two tries in the Tigers first win of 2019.

"The second half was fantastic, we had energy and enthusiasm and we weren't making mistake. Unfortunately we left ourselves with too much to do, you can't give teams a 20-point start and expect to reel that back in. The effort was amazing," Roy Jewitt said.

It was all Gundagai in the opening 40 minutes with captain Luke Berkrey crossing for two early tries as the Tigers raced to a commanding 28-6 lead.

Tigers winger Noa Fotu went in for his second after the break and James Luff added the extras to extend the lead to 34-6.

At the 53rd minute, Pickers captain Tom Bush stepped his way through the Tigers line to spark a comeback.

Jesse Corcoran, Aborosio Navori and Saul Lealaitafeta all crossed before the 70th minute to reduce the margin to 34-30, with Corcoran nailing all conversions.

With the clock ticking down, Young turned the ball over inside their half and Tigers centre Matt Lyons went in for his second try of the day, sealing a 38-30 win.

Gundagai coach Adam Perry was "disappointed" with his side's second half.

"We probably went away from what we were doing well in the second half and they had plenty of energy and enthusiasm and got back into the game, which was disappointing for us but we got the win," Tigers coach Adam Perry said.

Young coach Roy Jewitt identified Tom Bush, Casey Wall and Aaron Slater as three of the Young's best.

Full-back Nayah Freeman looks to be sidelined for an extended period after suffering a dislocated shoulder, while forwards Kyle Richens and Haydn Cowled also left the field with injuries.

The Pickers will have the Easter weekend to rest before a match with Wagga Brothers on April 28.

  • Gundagai Tigers 38 (Luke Berkrey, Noa Fotu, Matthew Lyons 2, James Luff tries; Luff five goals) bt Young Cherrypickers 30 (Aborosio Navori 2, Tom Bush, Jesse Corcoran, Saul Lealaitafea tries; Corcoran five goals)