My two cents

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c_eagle

Reserve Grader
I'm absolutely burning but there's no need to talk about how **** we were or complain about the ref, etc. etc.

From my POV, it was almost an identical game to a Friday night match against Brisbane back in 2005. It was our first Friday night match for almost 10 years, at Suncorp Stadium, playing for outright first.

I commentated back then how we looked like deer caught in headlights. We really just couldn't cope with the expectation, the pressure and the sheer magnitude of the event. (Mind you, back then it was about as big an event as we'd had since the '97 GF.)

Almost the same group of players had an identical reaction last night. Needless to say, we've won big matches since that match in 2005, including Friday nights, ones that take us to outright first and finals matches.

I didn't watch the presentations and I didn't stick around until the full-time siren. I hope the players are feeling the pain and react the way the Storm did in 2007, in 2008.
 

Duff

Bencher
I'm not entirely against the idea of blaming the ref, I must say.

What I saw was quite a bit of double standard refereeing.
Melbourne were allowed to get away with everything. They were constantly offside on the kick-chase, that is why we never had any field position. Two of our players were knocked senseless with absolutely no repercussion during the game but they'll get picked up by the review board, doesn't help us though. They eye-gouged, again without penalty. They scored two trys that if we had've attempted would've been called for obstruction, the last couple of months proves it. They were all over us in the ruck, our play the balls were much slower than theirs, that is an area which is totally determined by the ref & it all went in favour of the Storm.

I'd had a lot to drink so I'm sure I've missed other things but what I have mentioned should be enough to condemn Archer to PL & get Harrigan stood down, but it wont.

All things being fair, I don't know if we woul've won. I'd sure like to know though. I don't understand why the NRL thinks it wise to hand the game over to one team but a warning that I was wasting my $155.00, before I spent it, would have been appreciated.
 

Garts

First Grader
Agree with C Eagle, we should come back bigger and better next year as we will have learnt from the experience.

I could not even stick around till the full time siren, I got up and left when Newtown scored. Could not watch anymore!!!
 

Ryan

Journey Man
I'm absolutely burning but there's no need to talk about how **** we were or complain about the ref, etc. etc.

From my POV, it was almost an identical game to a Friday night match against Brisbane back in 2005. It was our first Friday night match for almost 10 years, at Suncorp Stadium, playing for outright first.

I commentated back then how we looked like deer caught in headlights. We really just couldn't cope with the expectation, the pressure and the sheer magnitude of the event. (Mind you, back then it was about as big an event as we'd had since the '97 GF.)

Almost the same group of players had an identical reaction last night. Needless to say, we've won big matches since that match in 2005, including Friday nights, ones that take us to outright first and finals matches.

I didn't watch the presentations and I didn't stick around until the full-time siren. I hope the players are feeling the pain and react the way the Storm did in 2007, in 2008.

This was the 1st year I saw that not one player was crying from the losing side. In fact, Steve Bell was having a ball with all his old Melbourne team mates. I was extremely dissapointed with Manly's poor attitude during the game, and after the game ! They obviously weren't emotionally attached enough for mine !!
 

c_eagle

Reserve Grader
But the rest of the team took it like another loss?

Seriously, I felt like I'd been punched in the kidneys. You'd expect the team to react just as badly if not worse.
 

willstyles

Bencher
Possibly. He obviously knew he'd had a shocker, but this kid loves Manly more than any other bloke on the team I reckon. He is crazy passionate about the team. And he looked f*cking disgusted last night at the loss.

I wouldn't say the other players took it like any other loss. They all looked cut up about it. Chris Hicks had the same look on his face everytime you saw him. And it wasn't a smile.

I don't think it's fair to say that they weren't looking shattered or weren't showing enough pride. The pride was definately there, and it definately hurt them. They were just totally outplayed on the day...that's all it came down to.
 

SilentBob

Bencher
Bell was on channel 10 news tonight, must have been interviewed during the day, he seemed pretty devastated by the end of it.
 

SilentBob

Bencher
My 2 cents...

The forwards were crap, the backs couldn't contain theirs, Monaghan showed the form which had a lot of people calling for Ballin, Orford had his little girl boots on. The forwards needed to toughen up, there is extra leeway in the GF for everything, Melbourne took advantage of it. I have no doubt that Crocker tackle on Stewart was part of their plan, I don't think I have seen Inglis put up so many bombs before, maybe it's just me.

No enthusiasm there, all the talk about just enjoying the week, it's not what you need, the biggest moment in your career and you just want to sit back and enjoy it? Not the right mentality to have, save it for weddings, Melbourne learnt that last year, there's nothing enjoyable about the week if at the end of it you're a loser.

But oh well, I'm not that gutted, I'm more pissed off at the effort than disappointed with the loss, 95/97 much worse.

Worst atmosphere at a game ever, worst pre game show ever, Frank Hyde tribute was pathetic.
 
G

Guest

Guest
Probably the worst thing about Crockers tackle on Stewart is that none of the other Manly players provded any blocking protection for him.

They left him on his own and let Crocker have an unimpeded shot at him. That was pathetic by the players.
 

willstyles

Bencher
The worst thing about it, without a shadow of a doubt, was that noone aimed up after it. The next time Crocker ran the ball everyone on the ground should've tried to put him in a hospital bed. But no, he f*cking scored a try instead running through horrendous defence.
 

Matabele

Journey Man
I'm absolutely burning but there's no need to talk about how **** we were or complain about the ref, etc. etc.

From my POV, it was almost an identical game to a Friday night match against Brisbane back in 2005. It was our first Friday night match for almost 10 years, at Suncorp Stadium, playing for outright first.

I commentated back then how we looked like deer caught in headlights. We really just couldn't cope with the expectation, the pressure and the sheer magnitude of the event. (Mind you, back then it was about as big an event as we'd had since the '97 GF.)

Almost the same group of players had an identical reaction last night. Needless to say, we've won big matches since that match in 2005, including Friday nights, ones that take us to outright first and finals matches.

I didn't watch the presentations and I didn't stick around until the full-time siren. I hope the players are feeling the pain and react the way the Storm did in 2007, in 2008.

Pretty much exactly what I've been thinking. The GF was reminiscent of:

2005: The FNF game versus broncos. We were talked up all week and crashed horribly. We now handle those big "regular" games with aplomb.

2006: The semi against the Dragons. Again our chances were talked up but we were inept in the semis. We cruised through our finals this year.

2007: We were flat and over awed in the GF.

One can sense that there will be a lot of hunger and desire to make ammends when the players gather for the pre-season. Competition for spots too.

I can see us shellacking some sides in 2008.
 

Downie

Reserve Grader
Melbourne showed us how to win it for next year. If you look through the ranks and the style of play, there are a lot of similarities and we can really learn from what they did this year and apply it to next year. Basically:

- Our attack was VERY predictable. Either just one out stuff or Orford running across the line and picking a runner close to the line. Very easy to defend against. Lyon really needed to stand up last night and get involved to give us some unpredictability. He has showed us in glimpses this year that he has what it takes to be a five-eighth, but really needs to become more consistent.

Melbourne had a lot of success by having a lot of players in motion. Whenever Cronk had the ball he had 5 players outside of him, all running, all expecting to get the ball. Orford had Watmough. Look at their first try. Cronk had three people outside him expecting the kick but went to the two outside them and we had nothing that could stop that. This comes down to the coaching staff - they need to spend the off-season drilling this into the players.

- Our kicking was shocking. I reckon half a dozen kicks at least went straight to Slater and fullback and he was given at least 15 metres to run. They put the bomb up several times, leaving Stewart with nowhere to move when he caught it. They also kicked to the corners or in some cases just kicked it dead, which meant they could form their defensive line without any risk of there being a break. In next years Grand Final (as we WILL make it) we need to copy their kicking game from this year. Hell, when we verse Melbourne next year, put the bomb up and have Menzies and Watmough there to absolutely smash Slater when he catches it (Menzies did this once or twice last year I believe).

- We forgot the basics. Everyone got too caught up in the fact they were playing in a Grand Final. Everyone was all 'BASH, SMASH, RIP, TEAR' that they forgot how to pass, catch, kick, tackle and get a straight line in the kick chase (I remember Cuthbertson being caught out five metres behind everyone else for one of Slater's breaks). This probably had something to do with the fact that everyone got too hyped up by it all - literally everyone in the team had stories in the paper written about them, they were all interviewed several times etc. that they forgot they were playing a simple game of rugby league. Compare this to Melbourne. How many times before the match did you see their names in the paper? It was all Manly, Manly, Manly. In short, our preparation terrible and I expected the people on both our coaching (Hasler, Toovey and put Cleal in here as well) and playing (Menzies and Lyon) staff to keep things more in control.

- Finally, what happened to this 'playing for each other' crap the players have been going on about all year? Our defence was WOEFUL last night. We were missing tackles that had been rudimentary all year. When Stewart got knocked out, I was EXPECTING us to fire and absolutely smash Crocker the next time he got the ball. But what happened? He breezed past King and scored. I hope Des fired a rocket up their collective ass after the game. To play well all year and then put up that display in the Grand Final is extremely disappointing.
 

Garts

First Grader
As for them not taking the loss hard enough, thats bull**** for mine. They would have been hurting inside, just because they did not cry like Hoffman did last year does not mean they were emotionally invested in it.
 

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