Adam, just your thoughts? It was obviously a really strong response at the start of the second half, but then you fell away.
We’re just not clicking and we are well behind where we need to be in terms of the rest of the competition. And it’s got absolutely nothing to do with where we are. We can very clearly separate the two, so don’t for one second think it’s got anything to do with being in a hub. It’s the way we’re playing, it’s consistency, it’s second halves, predictability, undisciplined play. We had a go at stages, but not for four quarters. We need to look and reassess and rework things. But we’re up for it. There’s time, but time is running out very quickly and we’re a long way off.
Are you concerned now at 1-3 with where the season is at?
Definitely. Concerned, but motivated to get better and I think our players will be too. It’s a great leveller this game. That’s where we are at. We’ve got to be really honest with our performance and own it and get on with it.
You mentioned the discipline. The TV showed exactly what you thought when you were talking to Will (Schofield) when he came off the ground after the incident in the third quarter. How do you react to that?
That’s just not ideal.
It’s uncharacteristic, isn’t it?
A little bit, yeah. We’re normally better than that and our leaders have always led from the front. That can be fixed. Whether it’s frustration, we just expect better. We did fight back. We were in the game . I thought we forced the issue, which was pleasing and then we got overrun. We need to look at it, review it and get better. There’s no magic fairy dust I can throw over it. We’ve just got to get to work.
That turned the game and it came in the middle of them getting the game back on their terms…
Momentum changes throughout the game all the time , so I won’t put it all down to one incident. I thought we lost momentum in that third quarter through a number of things. The predictability of our ball movement, fumbles just when you think you’re out we fumble it, when we should take it over the boundary line we don’t. And just when we should put a nice, big kill spoil in we haven’t been doing it. They are fundamentals.
The fumbly conditions were taken away with the day game today, but the pressure applied from Port was really strong. Has it been an issue in the past couple of weeks?
Port are in red hot form, so they’re in a really good headspace. They’ve won four in a row. They outplayed us and sustained their brand for most parts of the day and we had our opportunities and we didn’t take them. I thought there were fumbles from both sides at stages, but they just capitalised. I mean metres gained from turnovers in our front half, it was 1300 metres or something. Our inability to lock it in our front half needs to be addressed.
There is a perception that your inability to play your kicking game because of the conditions. It was dry today and it didn’t work.
We can park the conditions. You’ve got to evolve, there’s no doubt about that. I’ve always said the way we move the ball compliments other things. The comp at the moment, you need to get the ball in your front half and you need to keep it there. You’ve got to score or lock it in and we’re not doing that. We’re not capitalising on the scoreboard and we’re not locking it in. The ball movement stuff, yep, that can’t be the number one thing we do. I think when we’ve been at our best we’re pretty competitive in most areas.
The scoring side of things, 46, 44, 41. They are the consistent numbers that you’re scoring. You’re not giving your forwards much opportunity to do anything are you?
At times I think our forwards probably didn’t win enough contests in the front half and when we did lose those contests we allowed them to rebound too much. I don’t know how many forward half turnover scores they had, but they were probably pretty good. That’s their go; they’re pretty good at locking it in their front half and denying exits. When we had an opportunity to do it ourselves we didn’t do it. The effort was there on occasions, but the ability to stop it was not good enough.
Even nine to one tackles inside 50…
Yeah, tackles will get brought up I’m sure. When you have 14 inside 50s to six and 13 stoppages in your 50 you’ll have more tackles. That’s not an excuse at all. We weren’t tough enough. Whether you want to put tackles, ground balls, contested ball. Our mids, I thought, were pretty good. I thought they fought it out and clicked today to a certain degree. That’s a positive and we can leverage off that and keep working hard.
Blokes have earned the right to be backed in in the past. Have they still earned that right now or do changes start coming? You had four this week. Are you thinking maybe we need to start turning some players over?
I don’t think you do it for the sake of doing it. We haven’t looked at the game yet. We’ve got to assess and audit ourselves from what we do as a coaching group and what the players are doing. That will start and continue. We’ve been looking at it for a few weeks but we’ll look at it again and again with a sharper eye I suppose.
How close was Gov?
Yep, we missed Gov. Pretty close; we gave him until this morning and in the end it’s a five-day break against the Tigers. Bring that game on. It doesn’t get any easier. We’ll keep finding out more about ourselves in the next coming weeks. We’re up for the fight. I definitely am and I think our players are as well.