Every team needs some luck, and Roosters coach Brian Smith believes that his side has just that, luck – as the team prepares for next week’s clash v the Melbourne Storm, following their come from behind win against the Canberra Raiders at Allianz Stadium.
Given that the Roosters had a 53% completion rate, and an astonishing 20 errors, it was amazing that they somehow came away with the victory – compiled by the fact that the Roosters task was made easier, seeing as the Raiders finished the game with just 14 players.
“We know we can play a lot better than that and we will need to in terms of holding onto the ball and completing sets,” Smith said.
“We stretched the friendship beyond all possible belief today.
“A little bit of today may be good fortune. But the effort the boys put in today, their kick-chasing and on-line defence saved my bacon.”
In the NRL, there is no easy game, but when you come up against a Melbourne side who are beginning to hit their straps, it is never easy to defeat them – but Smith is hoping that his side play differently, to how they did against the Raiders.
“We go to Melbourne next week and I don’t know how much work you can pack into six days, but we’ll have a crack at it,” he said.
“Some of the stuff Melbourne are doing at the moment is off the dial. We’ll go and have a crack at them. We know how good they can be and we’ll measure ourselves against them.”
Smith also conceded that the decision to drop interchange hooker Anthony Mitchell to the bench, was going to be a costly one, with the former Eels scoring two tries for Newtown.
“I wasn’t thinking straight when I watched Anthony Mitchell play the Sharks in reserve grade,” he said.
“I thought he was going to cut the oranges and kick the goals. He did the whole lot and scored two tries.
“But Daniel came in and did a pretty good job and rescued my bacon a bit there.”
To make matters worse for the ailing Raiders, coach David Furner said that Josh Dugan would be out for around 2 months, due to an AC joint injury that the star fullback suffered in the loss.
Both Shaun Fensom (a possible torn bicep) and Trevor Thurling (ankle), also face possible stints on the sidelines, with scans to reveal more.
Despite the loss, Furner is pleased with his side’s effort, given they were three players down by the end of the game.
“It made it tough but I thought we may escape with the win – we had some opportunities,” Furner said.
“I was very happy with the way the players coped with the adversity and I did say to the players, we can still hold our heads up. We were just tanked.”
Although Dugan bravely tried to remain on the field, after 10 minutes of trying, the pain became too much, and he left the field as a result.
“Grading wise, it is about a three,” Furner said.
“Without having the scans, it is hard to know exactly, but it could be four to six weeks and maybe even longer.”
NRL News Dally M Points
Daniel Mortimer – 3
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