Rugby League 2023 Round 3 - Roosters vs Rabbitohs: Friday 17th March 8pm @Allianz Stadium

MaximusTruthus

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Livid. Just absolutely livid with our performance tonight. Fuming. Such a great start, we were looking so friggin dominant and I was honestly thinking a nice, relaxing game was on the cards. Great game plan, full of focus and energy, we looked great! really looked like the Chooks were going to be in for a long night.

So what the actual :) happened?? Seriously? I'm dumbfounded. Terrible, rancid performance for the next 60 mins. Started cruising and became lazy. 15 :)ing errors, penalties and set restarts galore with some pretty poor defence to boot. It was about as bad as it gets. I just don't understand how it comes to that after the way we started? So :)ing angry! We did everything we could to lose that game and we did. Just so dumb and the entire squad should hang their heads in shame.

Seriously, complete well and we win that, I truly believe that. Just appalled and disgusted at my team. Of all oppositions it just had to happen against the Roosters too.

The referee was terrible, we had no 50/50 calls, no six-agains, and the second Paulo try was an obstruction all day but I ain't blaming the ref. This is all on the players.

We're better than this, we're better than them.

This might be harsh but I am just fuming. We're chasing a Premiership and demand far better. It is simply not acceptable and there are no excuses.
We're not getting enough out of Walker, Cook and Mitchell, need Havilli to take pressure off Cook by giving him a rest.
 

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Can we please get through a game without losing a forward first set I’m :)ing over it. As soon as we get 1-2 back we lose 1-2 through injury.

So many Souths fans tonight seem just about ready to jump off the gap. It was so hot at the game I was dripping in sweat the whole game. Arrow will make a big difference in the middle he has to play next week.

Our biggest issue is holding the ball and in the air same as last year beating ourselves. Yes we aren’t getting a rub of the green currently but it can turn. The second a Rorters fan booed tonight they got a six again or penalty instantly that’s exactly what we have to do the next 2 home games get out there support the boys and get into the ref relentlessly. The 4-1 six again count tonight didn’t help. Murray made a 35 metre run then there was a second effort on him and they were 4 metres offside and we got nothing.

Trell everyone should lay off him he was marked well and I thought he got his hands on the ball more than usual had 16 hit ups. He busted his arse.

AJ not the best game especially in defence doesn’t help though when Manu is holding you away from attempting a tackle of saving a try.

Campbell: Very strong tireless but bombed a try.

Tass: Not his best night was very hard marking Manu. He tried his best.

Thompson: A mixed bag got found out on their second try. He did offer good hit ups out of trouble and made a couple of strong tackles. Would’ve had 2 tries had Campbell passed.

Cody: Not his best game he’s a bit out of sorts had a strong first half but not so good second half.

Lachy: Made some strong tackles but made too many errors 4 of them and an avg kicking game.

Junior: 149 metres was a strong first game back.

Cook: Made some very strong runs made over 100 metres tackled his heart out but a couple of poor passes.

Sele: Bloke has no luck.

Keaon: Worked very hard was so gassed at back end of both halves on a hot night he gave it everything…

Chee Kam: Wasn’t good but wasn’t bad. Did his job I guess but a poor error second half.

Murray: What can you say works so hard he couldn’t walk early on second half so had to have that 13mins spell. Murray is an inspiration out there.

Tom: Was pretty strong but fell off a couple of tackles.

Moale: Was a bit out of his depth tonight found it hard…

Shaq: He was good better than Moale but unfortunately now has a foot injury great another middle down.

Jed: Was solid in limited mins.

All in all guys it wasn’t meant to be tonight I’m not overly worried. Arrow back next week is a big in and Hosty. JD will have them up next week. Better the scum beat us now and we beat them when it counts and we will I saw enough there tonight! As I said we bombed about 3-4 tries.
 
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doyen

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We have a problem with COOK---he is at best a No. 14---wing,FB,hooker etc.as a reserve backup player---as long as he is at No.9 Sths can't win the comp----Mamo,Havili can't be any worse----I'm disappointed in Cody too & our half is average at this point----the only player worth his salt in our spine is Mitchell----other teams know now; STOP Latrell,STOP Sths !!
 

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Expected pack next week:

Tatola
Cook
Tom
Keaon
Chee Kam
Murray

Moale
Arrow (Host and Jed if Arrow out)
DSF
Host/Jed

So no Havili, Sele, Shaq, Knight

Also talk around Shaq will be out 6-8 weeks. That’s a blow can’t catch a break with injuries.
 
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stanleyg

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Bunnies started out on the hop like they were behind a deadline to deliver easter eggs and ran out of puff.
The Roosters outlasted them on fitness and got the result.
Basically too much too early left the bunnies short at the back end of the game.
 

stanleyg

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We have a problem with COOK---he is at best a No. 14---wing,FB,hooker etc.as a reserve backup player---as long as he is at No.9 Sths can't win the comp----Mamo,Havili can't be any worse----I'm disappointed in Cody too & our half is average at this point----the only player worth his salt in our spine is Mitchell----other teams know now; STOP Latrell,STOP Sths !!
Cook isnt your problem but discipline is and the ref was quite happy to use his whistle.
 
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callmack1

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S J

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What I saw of it - Souths seemed to think they had it after getting a 10 point lead. Smirking and that.

Then Cook and Walker - especially - never stopped moaning and complaining on EVERYTHING. The ref - the other team etc etc. And their discipline - for senior players - was abysmal.

They appeared to lose the plot imo. Instead of concentrating on winning - they concentrated on complaining.

Both sides made errors - but the bloke who did so much in the first half for Souths almost went missing in the second half - no-where near the same.

Teddy had a blinder for a change.
 
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MaximusTruthus

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Injuries not helping us but we're not respecting the ball.

Ilias had three knock ons, one after the Murray break with Chooks on the ropes, the Koala flick back to Ilias wasn't on. Also needs to mix up his kicking game, just gives catching practice for the opposition wingers and fullbacks.

Our discipline was terrible last night, easily should have had another couple of tries in first half but lack of smarts and mistakes cost us big time.

Walker needs to focus on his game rather than cranky pushy shovy complaining.

Cook getting tired playing 80 minutes, need Havilli back to take pressure off him.

JD and rest of staff need to weave their mind magic, effort is there but execution quite poor.
 

callmack1

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Just finished watching the replay so here's my full report,

Attack

Firstly, I'll talk about our actual attacking shape. When we actually were genuinely attacking, it looked really good. Far better than last week, far more crisp and far more slick. Seemed very dangerous and ominous almost every time we got down there. The Roosters really struggled to handle it and I think we actually had the perfect game plan to beat them. All this was evident in the first 25 minutes as we were WAY on top. Completely outplaying them, 10 points up and they just didn't know how to handle it. We looked pretty unstoppable.

However, that's when what let us down last night started to happen. The errors. This game was lost on simple individual errors, it really is as simple as that for me. We were on top, but the ill-discipline set in, and the focus disappeared. 16 errors all up last night. That is just simply not acceptable. It mostly wasn't even execution errors attacking and chancing our arm (which I can cop a lot easier), it was simply handline errors from individuals taking hit ups or playing the ball. Really poor. The exception to that was a couple of dropped balls in a try scoring chance. I know there was some fatigue out there but that is no excuse. It's really frustrating and has really pissed me off because as I mentioned earlier, the Chooks were really struggling to contain us when we got it right. But the errors we were making meant we barely put ourselves in a position to score because we were just constantly coming out of our end.

We did fail to take the few chances we did have though and I really feel like we left three tries out there at least. That cost us big time too.

In terms of rucking it out of our end and making yardage, I thought we did pretty well in that area, just did too much of it.

Defence

Our defence as a whole I thought was actually okay. Much better general play defence than last week, better line speed, better control of the ruck and they didn't look like making many line breaks. The boys covered most things well.

Our goal line defence over all was still pretty solid, the Roosters spent a lot of time down there, and I mean a lot of time, but we seemed to hold our own quite a lot, force them into errors, and turned them away. So I continue to be impressed with that.

However, it's just really disappointing that despite the fact that I thought the defence over all was solid, we still conceded 20 points. Honestly, all their tries were simply from poor slip ups from us. Slight lapses in concentration, a couple of poor defensive decisions (which I'll go into later) and that's all it took. Really disappointing because I think we defended better than the scoreline suggests.

Player by Player

L.Mitchell: Better. Probably his best game of the Season so far but still not up to the standard we need. Was more involved in our attacking shapes, kick returns, and hit ups, but it's still not enough I feel. He started the game really well, looked dangerous. An amazing pass for AJ's try that only Trell can do where he held it up just long enough to get Paulo interested before firing the bullet and executing it perfectly. But after that, aside from a couple of decent kick returns, he kind of went missing a bit. Did have a hand in our last ditch try which was really good but it was too little, too late. Defensively, he came up with a couple of good stops, looked strong there but I was disappointed he was nowhere to be seen on the Smith try. His goal kicking wasn't perfect, we could have won if it was, but that's not the reason for our loss. Still, it hasn't been the start to the Season we were all hoping for from Trell. Need more. He's been talking the talk, but I think it's time to shut up and deliver on field.

Johnston: Mixed game for AJ. With the ball, I thought he was really, really good. Fantastic positioning for his try, loved the way be positioned himself to take the pass and just stroll right on by Paulo. His hit ups and kick returns were pretty strong, and he got through plenty of work. Made a nice break off Trell again in the second half and did everything he could to send Tass in, but Manu had other ideas. He was also pretty safe under the high ball. It was defensively where I think his game was let down a bit. Handled most stuff that came his way but I just can't excuse the missed tackle for Paulo's first try. That was such a poor effort from AJ. He made Paulo look like a superstar.

Tass: Pretty good. Really held his own in all areas of his game. Strong carries and did a lot of them to get 121 meters. Did ask plenty of questions of the Roosters defence but couldn't quite break through. Had a chance to win the game in the second half if it weren't for that Manu tackle. Not gonna put too much shit on Tassy for that though, it was just a really smart play from Manu. Defensively I thought he was pretty strong, really strong actually. coming up against Manu isn't easy but he contained him pretty well. A try saver on Manu, held Jaxson up over the line once, and shut down most things that came his way. Paulo's first try wasn't his fault, however, I think he did mess up on Paulo's second as he slipped over so couldn't make a tackle. Overall, a pretty solid game for Tassy.

Graham: Probably our best yet again. In fact, it was a pretty amazing performance from Stretch. Firstly, I'll talk about his defence. He just continues to amaze me in that area. Literally, and I mean almost literally, nothing got past him. He shut down everything. Even when the Roosters looked like making a break, Stretch was there to cover. I lost count of the amount of times I said, "great tackle Stretch!" Not only that, be he made a couple of big tackles which forced errors too. 20 tackles, which is a lot for a center, with just 1 missed and 2 ineffective. Great stuff. What's more, he was equally good with the ball. He's hands down our best outside back at carting the ball out of our own end and he showed that again. A massive 194 meters, the most of any of our players, and a couple of really nice line breaks too. The only negative point of his game, and it was a big one to be fair, was not passing to Thompson right after half time when we made that break. There's no guarantee that Izaac would have scored as Tupou was looming, but Stretch should have at least tried. Still, he was our best player last night.

Thompson: Not bad. Really strong with his carries as he made 15 of them for 137 meters. No errors last night either. Great try that he scored to give us a shot at winning, that was an awesome finish. His defence was okay however, a couple of things he did really cost us. Firstly, the six-again Izaac gave away which lead to Brandon Smith's try later, it was just silly and no need for it. It was the fourth tackle too. Secondly, and probably one of the biggest moments of the game, was Tupou's try on half time. What the hell was Izaac doing? Seriously? He was right up and in next to Campbell marking no one! There was no need for him to be in like that and it just made it so easy for the Roosters. I was pissed off at him for that.

Walker: Not bad, not great. Started the game really well and looked in control to be honest. Had me thinking this was the night he was going to click for 2023. Some really nice kicks to force a couple of drop outs, had a hand in AJ's try and just looked really dangerous. He looked switched on. However, kind of like Latrell, kind of like last week, he went missing for a large part of the game. I guess there's not a lot he can do when guys around him are constantly making errors so we're always rucking it out of our own end. But I still feel like he could have demanded the ball more to try and create something. Was disappointed to see him get a bit flustered towards the end there again too, needs to show some leadership. However, a pretty good defensive performance from Cody.

Ilias: Not a great game for Lachy, he's come back down to earth a bit after Round 1. Great start with that beautiful pass to Keaon for our first try that was almost a carbon copy from Round 1. That was really great ball playing. He also had a hand in a couple of big breaks we made down our right-hand side. However, aside from that stuff, he wasn't great to be fair. A few big errors and his kicking game wasn't great at all, I think even he'd be the first to admit that. Solid defence but he did let himself down a bit on the Smith try. It was a poor read as he came up past the ball and left the huge hole.
 
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callmack1

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Tatola: A very welcome return as he was very solid, you can see how much we've missed him. really lead the way for the forwards through the middle as he made a huge 165 carries out of his two stints. Nothing he did really stood out but it was a combination of all his work that impressed me. Plenty of strong carries. We saw the impact he was making on the game when he came off actually because that's when we lost momentum and the Roosters came over top from that point on.

Cook: Wasn't bad but it wasn't a great game from Cooky. He was trying really hard with plenty of runs in the first half but to be fair, they were largely ineffective. That trend continued for most of the game. I think he took the wrong option a few times, especially early in the first half after the Campbell Graham break. Instead of spreading left where we were all set, Cooky chose a series of crash plays and then went right where the Roosters were waiting. That was a big moment. Outstanding in defence though as always with a huge 42 tackles, barely any missed. You could see how exhausted he was at the end of the game as he clearly tried his heart out.

Sele: A really unfortunate return for Hame as we all know. I hope he's okay.

Koloamatangi: Certainly, one of our better players out there, he looked really damaging. Great hole running for his try. If you look closely, Keaon actually changes his line and skips to the outside of Keary a split second before Lachy passes which allows him to stroll through. Great awareness and great skill. For the rest of the game, he looked pretty dangerous, running over Keary a couple of times. Got through a mountain of work too with 14 runs for 119 meters, that's not bad. A couple of big shots in defence, real aggression. However, he did make an error and it was a really lazy effort from him when Smith scored. I know he would have been tired, but he didn't even really try.

Chee Kam: Feel like I've said the same for three weeks now but once again, he just did his job. Nothing flash but you can't ask for much more than that. But he wasn't perfect. An absolute brain explosion in the second half when he tried to throw that offload. He didn't even look and just threw it in hope. No need for that and it ended up costing us big time.

Murray: Outstanding. Absolutely outstanding. Tried his heart out and worked himself to an absolute stand still. He could barely even walk towards the end. 42 tackles, 13 carries for 114 meters and no errors. just kept going and going. His break in the first half was amazing, he just went straight through but sadly, we weren't able to capitalise on it. A great knock from Cam, did everything he could.

Cartwright: Certainly better than last week. Didn't play a huge amount of minutes but he didn't do much wrong. Some really good tackles, some really crucial tackles and a couple solid runs.

Moale: I wasn't super impressed with Davvy to be completely honest. Just like last week, he didn't do much. Looked a bit overwhelmed and a bit out of his depth. We do have to remember he's only 19 and a lot of young front rowers do struggle early in their careers.

S.Mitchell: Really impressive once again. He was killing it!! Some huge carries, he looked hungry for work and he was bending the line in each carry. Really unfortunate his night was ended by injury, hope it's not too bad.

Burgess: Very good when he got stuff right. Along with Murray and Tatola, he was probably our best forward. Did his best to tear into the Roosters pack and he was pretty barnstorming at times. Played longer minutes once again but didn't shirk it as he had a massive 17 runs for 149 meters. Really good. His defence was solid and he came up with a couple of big shots but he did let himself down with a couple of errors and a really silly strip in the second half.

Over all, a terrible night for us. really disappointed and hurting after that and I'm sure the boys will be too.

However, it is probably a bit of a positive that we played the worst we have in a long time but still very nearly got the result against the Roosters. In saying that, thinking that kind of makes it more frustrating because it just goes to show the game would have been so different if we were better.

I think all the issues last night, while inexcusable, are very fixable. We'll be fine, just need to sort our shit out and get it right. Plenty to work on but we can do it! Need to bounce back next week.
 

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To state the obvious (and I’m sure it’s already been said) but it’s hard enough to play 3 consecutive away games against finals-bound teams (2 of which were top 4 last year) as our opening to the season.

That’s when you need a bit of luck to go your way.

Unfortunately we had the opposite:

in 2 of 3 games we lost a middle in basically the first play of the match
against the Sharks we were down to 15 men after Arrow went off
that mammoth effort was followed up with a 5 day turnaround to face the premiers with a home ground and home ref advantage
we were down to 15 again vs the Chooks with Shaq forced off
middles decimated generally (Knight, Sele, Havili, Tatola, Shaq and arguably Arrow)
It didn’t help that crucial calls went against us:

Penrith’s knock on “try”
Manu stopping in the line (sure, Cody milked it but it’s an obstruction regardless of the defender hamming it up)
Stretch taking the short dropout and having it ruled a knock on
Thompson in goal last week bobbling the ball but regaining it, also called a knock on (and strangely unchallenged)
And for all that, both our losses were one score away from a win or golden point.

Fingers crossed, with an easy run home and hopefully some reprieve from injuries our win/loss ratio will improve heaps by season end.

From Lurker off the Warren
 

stanleyg

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The Bunnies also buggered at at least two of the three "non tries" which didnt help their cause.
They ran out of puff and struggled at the back end of the game BUT they arent the only sides in that position possibly due to heat and humidity in their bunny fur however the cold winter period will see them bounce back
 
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