Shattered Warriors teenager Reece Walsh has offered a brutal assessment of his side’s performance, saying he and his teammates “sabotage ourselves”.
Walsh and the Warriors were blown off 4 Pines Park by a Manly side without skipper Daly Cherry-Evans, with the Sea Eagles ramming home seven tries en route to a 44-12 win.
The match was virtually over at half-time as the Sea Eagles took a 24-0 lead into the sheds after a dismal first 40 minutes from Nathan Brown’s side.
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Speaking after his side’s loss, the disappointment was written all over the 19-year-old Walsh’s face.
“It’s tough. We just go out there and we sabotage ourselves, there’s no other way to put it,” he told Fox League.
“We put ourselves under pressure and we keep doing it every week. It’s not good enough. Like I said, we keep shooting ourselves in the foot.
“There’s just patches where we don’t get it right and we just make it so easy for the other team, it’s really frustrating.”
When asked how the Warriors could lift in the coming weeks as they prepare to head back to New Zealand after two seasons away, Walsh did not thin his words.
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“We’ve just got to go home and look at ourselves in the mirror. Just ask ourselves do we really want to be here, do we really want to be trying for our mates?” he said.
“At the moment, the things we’re tossing up, we’re not working for our mates. It’s first-grade and it’s not good enough.
“We’ve got to get tighter as a group and really just become stronger and just start working harder for each other.”
Walsh’s disappointment was echoed by his coach, who has come under immense pressure with his side having lost seven of his last eight matches.
“Our first half was obviously horrible, you can’t hide from that, you can’t offer any excuses,” Brown said after the match.
“We trained very well during the week. As a coach, the start of the game is very important and you’re supposed to prepare your team to start and obviously, I’ve got to take a fair hit there. We started very well last week, but we got it wrong this week.
“It’s definitely (the most disappointing 40 minutes of the season). Don’t get me wrong, Manly played well, but they didn’t have Cherry (Daly Cheery-Evans) or Tommy (Tom Trbojevic) in either, so we can ‘t hide our disappointment at all.”
While he appears to be on the hot seat, Brown, who has coached over 450 first-grade matches across the NRL and the Super League, refused to buckle to the pressure.
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“I’ve been coaching a long time now, so I don’t coach on fear,” he said.
“We just keep preparing the best we can to do what we feel is right. I’ve been around too long to worry about the other stuff, to be honest. I’ve had a long run in these chairs and you just keep doing what you think is right.
“We by no means have entered every game this year going out there and thinking we’re going to win every contest, but we’d certainly like to compete in every contest, and we’ve had a few of late where we haven’ t competed very well.
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“That’s the most disappointing thing, we might get a few things wrong but we can’t get the compete bit wrong.”
Brown’s Warriors will look to break their losing streak when they face the Cronulla Sharks next weekend, while the Sea Eagles will face the Wests Tigers.
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