Mark Applegarth was understandably delighted as his side ended their losing run as they defeated Leeds Rhinos despite going down to 12 men.
Here is everything he said.
Summation of the win
I think they’ve answered quite a few questions today, they’re a real together bunch you know we’ve done it tough and the most pleasing thing is that you know we’ve given self a fighting chance again you know that’s what we’re bothered about so yeah personally it’s nice to get that that first win it’s never nice when you know you’ve had a prolonged period like that and we’ve tried well.
I’ve definitely tried not to to blame anything but myself you know and the injury situation or anything like that but I’m just really pleased that the lads that went out onto that field today you know what what a stint I thought they stood up for one another and you know when we went down to 12 men it’d have been quite easy for them to to roll over and think here we go again and you know they dug in and just really proud of them so yeah more of a proud coach tonight than anything else.
Doing things differently?
No we just talked about, I keep on saying that I sound like a broken record but that that confidence and composure, you know, we’ve got some good rugby in us. The problem is we’ve been leaving it until that last 10 minutes, you know, when a game’s gone beyond us. So I thought that first 20, 25 minutes we moved all around exactly how we planned in training, you know, tired leads out, you know, got a few errors out of them. So just really, really pleased that, you know, we’re starting to show what we’ve been working on on our training field and transfer it into a game. So they are a good group of 80, or we are a good group of 80.
We’ve known all week what sort of team we were going to put out. And one thing, I knew the young lads that I’d had in the academy, I knew exactly what their temperament and character were like. Obviously I’ve worked with him for a good six years prior to this. You know the two French lads that came on trial, you knew you were going to get a load of enthusiasm out of them and I thought both were good.
Obviously Hugo’s really disappointed that he’s got that red card but I thought before that he was putting himself about and I thought Romain, he looked dangerous every time he got the ball didn’t he?
I thought it’s a red there’s no questions about it I thought referee yeah he dumped him on his head I don’t think there were any intent but yeah there’s no crimes from us there we deserved red card and Hugo’s disappointed but you know that’s the rules of the game isn’t it.
I thought it could go one of two ways, they were really confident at half time that if we kept his foot on the throw and you know kept his completions high in yardage and kept on moving the ball around in good ball. You know Leeds were coming away in error too, especially coming out of their own half so we’re still pretty confident and I thought it’s going to go one of two ways this, we’re either going to drop their heads and you know let them get back into it or we’re going to keep his foot on the throw and keep that pressure on so just glad that they chose the latter and showed what character they’ve got.
Stand out performances
But there’s got to be a special mention to I thought Matty Ashurst, Jay Pitts and Sam Hewitt in that back three, unbelievable how the work rate just demands, I thought Tafs really put in a captain shift and then Morgan Smith, I thought he stepped up to the plate today, it’s been quite easy for a lot to write us off with Mason missing and I thought he answered a few few questions today but really proud of all of them it’s been a real real good week’s training I’m just glad that we’ve shown up and got that result away there.
What it does for the group
Well it gets that monkey off the bat you know when you’ve been what we’re on now round 15 is it you and you’ve done that many games without a win it’s not a nice feeling I’ve never had to deal with anything like that in my coaching career at whatever level so it just takes that off us and hopefully we can kick on now we’ve got I think we count with 12 players that are due back you know for the whole KR game you know Kelepi who’s had surgery on his broken arm, most of the other injuries should be there or thereabouts. So again it creates competition for places and some of the younger end of that squad have grown into it today. They’ve answered a few questions they probably had in their own head and hopefully we can kick on and start putting some pressure on them teams around us.
I’m worried about not thanking everyone but yeah I’ve just got a strong network around me and I don’t want to thank one or two because I don’t want to offend a couple that I miss but John and Michael have been great too. They know exactly what’s been happening and where we’re at so I suppose I’d like to thank them too because I know they put up with quite a lot of criticism as well.
Disappointed to have a week off
Yes and no, we got a lot of busted bodies. I mean, Jay pitt should not have played today. He was playing on one leg. He’s put his hand up for the team. So I’m glad that we’ll be able to pressure a few up. Yeah, but at the same time, it’d be nice to continue that momentum with it for sure. it’d be nice to continue that momentum with it for sure.