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Trial observations

AlxFromNthNarra

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Observations:

Critical:
  • Right side D was exploited at will by a team inferior to 3/4 of our first opposition teams 2021. Rabbits in Rd 2 on that performance is a scary proposition given how they went down that side with. Temper expectations imo. 1-3 would be best we can hope for with turbo out and on today's performance. Roosters in Rd1 will exploit our RHS D - I would.
  • Going to be another long season with 6-agains as we don't seem to have worked that out. Even when completing a dominant tackle in D, team hasn't worked out how to stall opposition momentum.
  • Depth is not as deep as I hoped.
  • Wings still super vulnerable in defensive decision making.
  • Hard to see how having 50 put on you in a trial helps anything
  • Player Rotations in 1st half were limited
Positive:
  • Davey, Schuster, Harper did well
  • Kicking game given no DCE was acceptable
  • (Late) Offloads showed some promise and gave us some easy 2nd phase metres
  • Aloiai had limited minutes, but did seem to bring some mongrel
  • Birt had limited time but we need 9s more than ever, he might be Mr. 30 imo
  • We rested a lot more of our mainstays than the Tigers
Simply put, if we cop the injury toll from last year we will not be able to match it with injury-free teams. Losing Turbo earlier and Cust today exposed 2 positions we are short on. Harper and Birt may be adequate cover, but we can't expect they will be gamebreakers if we are spending most of our time on D.

Overall its a trial, i'm pragmatic about that. Roosters rd 1 will be far more telling.

However, those players out there today must be thinking about their methods tonight, maybe uncertain of Des' strategy. Lambs to the slaughter? Or playing a closed hand?

Regardless tell me how having 52 run against you on a clear sunny day has positive takeaways on the mindset of a team that won 1 of 9 games at the back-end of last season.
 

Snake

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We looked pretty ordinary. You can always say it’s just a trial and yeah I don’t care about the result but to have 50 put on us and look disinterested and dumb...it’s just a ‘vibe’ I’m feeling but it ain’t a good one.
 

Hotspur2014

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De ja vu of last year. Slow in attack and defense. The new rules are going to kill us. We look so far off the pace. Get ready for a year of pain. Only upside was Shuster.
I know that most of our “stars” did not play, but you have to question our depth and the way they have learned nothing in the off season about defence, quick play the balls , 6 again penalties etc. WHAT DID THESE SQUAD PLAYERS DO IN PRESEASON TRAINING - LOOKS LIKE THEY DID FCK ALL BASED ON TODAYS PERFORMANCE !
Also we have lost the art of being winners.
I sadly feel we are in for a long season if Turbo & Fainu are not around.
Hope I’m proved wrong
 

winnyason

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Signed Foran to help dce and Schuster. Either as a starter or depth he is a great signing for us. Unless you'd prefer croker? Yea i thought as much. Aloiai was signing to replace afB. I agree we should sign Peats, why not. He would come cheap
Our middle defence is ****inng horrible it been that way since Api left. He be looking for a start 1 year deal with option of 2nd.
Foz will help
 
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I agree that "it's only a trial", but trials are meant to allow some talent to shine through.

It did with Schuster, but apart from him at 6, as far as backlines go, I wouldn't employ nos. 1 through 7 on their performances today, even if they were on jobseeker.

Second half reserves were, in the majority, not much better with only a few little highlights. RHS defence was still atrocious.

A bit more effort shown from some in the pack however we didn't have enough ball to show any constructive attack.
 

Mal Cochrane

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I thought Shipley went well today also. Paseka and Marty were good without being great also.

Too often our tacklers were slow getting up and if we had a marker, then the 2nd tackler would often be turning their back getting into the 2nd marker position and the tiggers often took advantage of this

About our wingers, so when is Tafua back?

Cust was looking good until injured.

Weekes was going ok in attack and some 1 on 1 defense. but yes he was found out also a few times. Give him a break.

I didn't notice Jetski as much as others, but sure was impressed with Davey.

After the 3rd try to tiggers, Kapow was sitting on his arse in goal shaking his head as if not impressed. That is not how a leader reacts, they get up and rally the troops and keep things positive.

Sirro, geez...someone cut off his right leg so he stops stepping back inside.

Parker will be solid backup this year, shouldnt be first choice but no probs with him coming into the team when needed.

No one steered the ship, but Manly have Foran and DCE returning so that will help immensely.

Harper showed enough at fullback to be first choice cover, and will look better with DCE and Foran in the spine

Thought Boyle tried hard, no nonsense hard yakka much like Hall/Rodney

The young hooker looked ok, grade him early this year for experience and see where that leads.

Ummm, what else....
 

wombatgc

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Didn't watch game but seems the biggest issue is still hooker and ruck defence. We have been terrible since Api departed. I also think a player like Peats at least could help with defence in the middle. Same problem as last year, teams get a roll on through the middle, our edge forwards and centres come in field to compensate and we get stripped out wide. I think there is enough attack in that side when they click, but defence has been a real problem for ages now. No where near Melbourne, Roosters, Panthers etc
Oh, the days of the fast front on jarring defence by Api in the middle. Crushing the oppositions momentum. We’ll not be a decent threat until we get another Api.
 

Ron E. Gibbs

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Regardless tell me how having 52 run against you on a clear sunny day has positive takeaways on the mindset of a team that won 1 of 9 games at the back-end of last season.
This hits the nail on the head. Sure, we've lost trials by big margins before, and I think it was BOZO who pointed out in another thread that the Roosters were thumped by the Bunnies at the back end of last season and managed to recover. The difference is, those were aberrations - one offs. With this Manly team, it's an unbroken pattern. By the time last season had come to an end, we had effectively give up. We got belted every week. This was out first chance to show some improvement, to give the fans and the players a bit of hope. Instead, we got served up that steaming pile.
 

Shane4500

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I'll also add.
Did anyone else see Parker get concussed on his first hit up? Wasn't even a hard tackle, its going to be an issue for him again, was also stood up easily by Roberts and in my opinion should be our last centre option.

Also Cust looked good in his stint, was scheming and played as an extra half at times and has a nice short kicking game! I've said all along Croker and Cust combo will be fine, it was always gonna be the problem when one or both were injured... the season hasn't even started and we're testing our hooker depth! Cust is a bit of a "Turbo" he's injured more than he plays!
yep he stumbled - no doubt. Sadly he is a tough player but his head is made of the same tissues as Turbo's hammies
 

pjayz

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Des has already said he was just resting Crocker (no hammie problems). He’ll be the 9. The kid should’ve got more than ten minutes.
Doesn’t mean he wants to risk our only genuine hooker for injury. I still think that is what he was doing. Why else play a prop at hooker?

Even if Birt is depth - he is the only depth we have.
 

Shane4500

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The very biggest problem we had was players caught on the ground after a tackle or yes as others have said backs turned ala Suli as they get up. That simply comes down to fitness and desire. You need to basically bounce up off the ground after a tackle to get to marker or get back into the defensive line. If you are uber fit... you should be able to do it all day obviously except for a number of repeat sets one after the other. It doesn't look to me like they are uber fit and certainly desire was almost non existent. As I mentioned the arm grabbing and pathetic tiggy touch tackling efforts were disgraceful as well. I was always told from juniors - go low - lead with your head - the body will always follow and at the last minute tuck the head to the side. These guys need to read "Johnny Raper - how to play Rugby League" it is all spelled out simply with photos! Seriously those tackling efforts yesterday... at 50 something I could still tackle better than most of those second half efforts. The application in defense, the fitness and desire... based on yesterday we have real problems. Lets hope all the arm grabbers were the Blacktown and younger players unlikely to get a run this year. There were soooo many missed tackles you had no hope of working out who was trying to call touched or grabbed... forgetting it was a real game where shoulders are needed!
 

Shoe1

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Interesting that Des never put the strongest possible combo of the selected players out there yesterday. Lots of young players in every variation of the line up. Maybe he was looking at individual performances, not the team?
 

jbb/james

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Morgan boyle. Named at 13 , on fringe of selection.
Am i right in saying this is his last year.
Was a complete plodder and looked so uninterested and based on effort should be behind everyone

Our back row is butt average. Jake has been playing a distributor role. As many have mentioned sirro was butt average and his last dozen games have been so

Jetski looked pretty good, davey looked pretty good and oka looks to have potential . We are too prop heavy. Sirro should move up front if selected but would be behind at least 4 others Was it rumoured he was being offered as a swap for garner at some point. Not surprised

Both he and boyle need to be moved on . Keppie needs a big year also . Great defender but seems to lack a bit of punch in attack . I thought yesterday though he looked to be working on that which is great. I hope he kicks on

Interested to see what des does with schuster, foran,
Birts cameo showed us how badly we need a hooker with speed and a decent pass. Cust was busy and good but his ability to get the team rolling with a crisp pass to the forwards was telling

No use slitting the wrist on a trial though but its great to chuck around the selection ideas based on skill and attitude

I think we would have probably won yesterday if we kept albert hoppa
 

Snake

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I thought Schuster’s game was full of individual highlights but I wasn’t impressed with the way he marshalled the team. Foran will give the side more direction. Schuster will be an outstanding player but I can see the aspects he is working on (as Des put it).
 

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