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    Quote Originally Posted by tilly2006 View Post
    But it was Holbrook who picked so many players who were obviously not fit so the buck stops with him for picking so many undercooked players in the first place
    I posted 2 weeks ago Holbrook might play the 4 injured in the final even though not fully fit . For me only Knowles was fit .

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    Quote Originally Posted by fonsboy View Post
    I posted 2 weeks ago Holbrook might play the 4 injured in the final even though not fully fit . For me only Knowles was fit .
    I’m not even sure he was. I’ve not seen it again yet so apologies if wrong but for their first try Knowles missed the previous tackle to allow the position to score, and he looked weak in the tackle on several other occasions

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    There is a difference between healthy and fit. There is also a difference between fit and game ready.


    None of those returning were game ready. They needed ball in hand.

    Walmsley rolled the clock back 5 years and old habits of dropping a ball stone cold came back.

    Coote had not kicked many before joining saints and once his week in week out consistency had been broken he needed more time to settle back in. Percy should have kicked.

    I could go on. But the Wembley team should have played at Leeds..

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    ...
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    My thoughts, for what little they are worth:

    - The Knowles decision was wretched, and if it had been given as it should have been, would have drastically changed the course of the game. Genuinely think we would have hammered them, but it knocked our stuffing out and they grew in confidence as ours drained away.

    - I think we need to be ruthless and bring in a new, dominant half if we don't believe Richardson is the answer as Lomax and Fages most certainly aren't. Absolutely anonymous yesterday.

    - The doubts people have around Holbrook having the nous to coach a winning team have become cacophony. Once again we turn up to a major game with no plan B (did we even have a plan A?). Could have played until Midnight and we wouldn't have won.

    Let's hope Woolf has the ability to drag teams over the line.

    Finally, congratulations to Wigan Warriors on their 2019 Grand Final victory. We sure as sh*t aren't winning it.

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    When they were looking at the stats at half time yesterday it was mentioned that most of the forwards had only made a handful of carries each and 'surely thats not enough in a cup final!' I think it was Jamie Peacock who said 'no, theyre going to have to step it up.' Is there an over reliance on the centres and wingers trying to make ground. Anyhow, back to basics would be a good start for the team.

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    They had a game plan that they all bought into and we played into their hands. Each time we gave possession away it cost us 3/4 sets. They would finish with an attacking kick and we'd be coming out of our 10. It would take us a few sets to break that cycle and make ground then we'd come up with another error and we'd be back into that pressure of fielding and attacking kick. They just kept chipping away and eventually that field position came good for them. Their kicking was streets ahead.

    The ref came up with some stinkers but we should have been much better than we were. I thought we missed Lees, we've gone up a gear against them on the interchanges in previous games this year and philbin did that for them instead.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Oberon Sexton View Post

    - The doubts people have around Holbrook having the nous to coach a winning team have become cacophony. Once again we turn up to a major game with no plan B (did we even have a plan A?). Could have played until Midnight and we wouldn't have won.
    Very good point. Add to that a big game winning 5th tackle options /kicking game.
    Ok when 16-0 up against a huddersfield is not the same as big tight games.

    The term outcoached been used a lot. Did Price do that - maybe/maybe not?

    All you have to do against Saints in a big game is 5 drives and a kick and just watch Saints
    implode.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Houghwood Saint View Post
    When they were looking at the stats at half time yesterday it was mentioned that most of the forwards had only made a handful of carries each and 'surely thats not enough in a cup final!' I think it was Jamie Peacock who said 'no, theyre going to have to step it up.' Is there an over reliance on the centres and wingers trying to make ground. Anyhow, back to basics would be a good start for the team.
    Our pack was pretty much non-existent
    Dave Woods: the guy who makes Eddie Hemmings look like a decent commentator

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ralph Fridge View Post
    Our pack was pretty much non-existent
    We gained lots of feild position, but it was either an error or a no threat play on the last.

    Even when we made a break, (fages) he ran away from his support players and cut in field.

    Tommy mack was the closest to scoring and it was a great cover tackle that stopped him.

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    I think a lot of credit needs to go to Warrington. Winning a final or any big game is about having a game plan that exploits weaknesses in the opposition and having the discipline to stick with it and be relentless with it. That’s exactly what they did yesterday so fair play to them. That’s twice in less than 12 months they’ve done it too us and knocked us out of competition.

    I just don’t think we’re as good as we think we are to be honest right now. We’ve had 12 + months to prepare for that exact game and once again we can’t deal with a team who completes high, kicks accurately, chases hard and shows some discipline defensively. We play some nice stuff at times through the league but we just don’t have that steel and focus right to stay in the big games when it gets tough.

    When a team plays as Warrington did yesterday, or Catalan did last year, there are periods of the game where you just have to match it: complete your sets, kick, chase, don’t make mistakes. We are totally unable to do it and we panic and lose concentration. Not far off 20 errors says it all really I think.

    Any talk or words such as “x factor”, “attacking shapes” or comments about our halves, I massively disagree with. To score tries in big games you have to put them under pressure, you have to stress the defence. You do that by completing your sets, keeping the ball in play and by making sure that there is continuity in the game. We didn’t cause Warrington any stress because we kept making mistakes so their defence was fresh, clear headed and therefore they were able to make good decisions and shut our attack down.

    As fans, I’d like to think it’ll be a bit of a turning point. There is nothing wrong with being positive and supporting your team but some of the comments this week were pretty disrespectful IMO. We seem to be very quick to criticise and judge other players, other clubs, other tactics and write them off. I don’t think being a bit more open minded would be a bad thing.

    We’ve got the ability to win the GF but it’s a mental thing now once again, they have to prove they’ve got the mentality to stay in a tight contest.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tez the Saint View Post
    I think a lot of credit needs to go to Warrington. Winning a final or any big game is about having a game plan that exploits weaknesses in the opposition and having the discipline to stick with it and be relentless with it. That’s exactly what they did yesterday so fair play to them. That’s twice in less than 12 months they’ve done it too us and knocked us out of competition.

    I just don’t think we’re as good as we think we are to be honest right now. We’ve had 12 + months to prepare for that exact game and once again we can’t deal with a team who completes high, kicks accurately, chases hard and shows some discipline defensively. We play some nice stuff at times through the league but we just don’t have that steel and focus right to stay in the big games when it gets tough.

    When a team plays as Warrington did yesterday, or Catalan did last year, there are periods of the game where you just have to match it: complete your sets, kick, chase, don’t make mistakes. We are totally unable to do it and we panic and lose concentration. Not far off 20 errors says it all really I think.

    Any talk or words such as “x factor”, “attacking shapes” or comments about our halves, I massively disagree with. To score tries in big games you have to put them under pressure, you have to stress the defence. You do that by completing your sets, keeping the ball in play and by making sure that there is continuity in the game. We didn’t cause Warrington any stress because we kept making mistakes so their defence was fresh, clear headed and therefore they were able to make good decisions and shut our attack down.

    As fans, I’d like to think it’ll be a bit of a turning point. There is nothing wrong with being positive and supporting your team but some of the comments this week were pretty disrespectful IMO. We seem to be very quick to criticise and judge other players, other clubs, other tactics and write them off. I don’t think being a bit more open minded would be a bad thing.

    We’ve got the ability to win the GF but it’s a mental thing now once again, they have to prove they’ve got the mentality to stay in a tight contest.
    Though I largely agree, I thought in the first half we weren’t far off what you advocated. We switched off to allow Philbin in and down the short side for the BMM try. Other than that we were ok and they defended excellently.

    The second half was a huge issue. We tried to play at 200 miles per hour and seemed intent to dictate; the latter is fine if applied with discipline but Saints showed little respect for the ball. The issue was not only dropping the ball but that Warrington just went into bend but dont break defence. In other words allowed us to gobble up yards because they knew they were faced with little more than one out rugby focussed on quick ptbs and a few set plays theyve seen all before later in the set. It was a desperate performance.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Houghwood Saint View Post
    When they were looking at the stats at half time yesterday it was mentioned that most of the forwards had only made a handful of carries each and 'surely thats not enough in a cup final!' I think it was Jamie Peacock who said 'no, theyre going to have to step it up.' Is there an over reliance on the centres and wingers trying to make ground. Anyhow, back to basics would be a good start for the team.
    I did wonder if that was Saints game plan? Did they intend to run Wire around then bring Walmsley and Thompson back on in the 2nd half relatively fresh. However Wire were "savvy" and used Hill and Coopers head injuries to effectively increase their substitutions.
    The Hicks decision to not use the video ref was wrong but to be fair at full speed on first viewing it didn't look like a try and the Lineham no try was just as poor, the Saints maker pushed him into the the Wire player playing the ball.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rogues Gallery View Post
    I did wonder if that was Saints game plan? Did they intend to run Wire around then bring Walmsley and Thompson back on in the 2nd half relatively fresh. However Wire were "savvy" and used Hill and Coopers head injuries to effectively increase their substitutions.
    The Hicks decision to not use the video ref was wrong but to be fair at full speed on first viewing it didn't look like a try and the Lineham no try was just as poor, the Saints maker pushed him into the the Wire player playing the ball.
    No ‘to be fair about it’ Its a majorfinal. Always go to the screen. He should sit a round of games on that alone.

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    Think everything I have been thinking has been covered by the above posts. I am even more disappointed this morning than I was yesterday. I have had my concerns over Holbrooks tactics in big games before and yesterday it was evident for all to see. Price out coached Holbrook pure and simple. It’s going to take a mighty effort to win the GF one I feel is beyond
    him. Hopefully I’m proved wrong and with a fully fit Coote, Roby and Walmsley we will be a different team. Thought we was crying out for a bit of off the cuff rugby yesterday, perhaps a chip kick but we were very robotic. Coote and Paulo were in to brought in to bring a calming influence but sadly there was no evidence of it yesterday.

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    Cant stand the video ref technology and i'd scrap it. But to have it in place and not use it is ridiculous. An in-goal judge would be better, preferably one that goes to specsavers! I knew it was a try in real time straight away and knew that Knowles had downward pressure. I punched the air and said as much from the comfort of my own living room. I turned away, then looked back and Warrington were tapping the ball on the 20 meter line. I couldnt believe it! Like i say , definitely they need to be looking at an in-goal judge.
    Last edited by Houghwood Saint; 26th August 2019 at 06:11.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tez the Saint View Post
    I think a lot of credit needs to go to Warrington. Winning a final or any big game is about having a game plan that exploits weaknesses in the opposition and having the discipline to stick with it and be relentless with it. That’s exactly what they did yesterday so fair play to them. That’s twice in less than 12 months they’ve done it too us and knocked us out of competition.

    I just don’t think we’re as good as we think we are to be honest right now. We’ve had 12 + months to prepare for that exact game and once again we can’t deal with a team who completes high, kicks accurately, chases hard and shows some discipline defensively. We play some nice stuff at times through the league but we just don’t have that steel and focus right to stay in the big games when it gets tough.

    When a team plays as Warrington did yesterday, or Catalan did last year, there are periods of the game where you just have to match it: complete your sets, kick, chase, don’t make mistakes. We are totally unable to do it and we panic and lose concentration. Not far off 20 errors says it all really I think.

    Any talk or words such as “x factor”, “attacking shapes” or comments about our halves, I massively disagree with. To score tries in big games you have to put them under pressure, you have to stress the defence. You do that by completing your sets, keeping the ball in play and by making sure that there is continuity in the game. We didn’t cause Warrington any stress because we kept making mistakes so their defence was fresh, clear headed and therefore they were able to make good decisions and shut our attack down.

    As fans, I’d like to think it’ll be a bit of a turning point. There is nothing wrong with being positive and supporting your team but some of the comments this week were pretty disrespectful IMO. We seem to be very quick to criticise and judge other players, other clubs, other tactics and write them off. I don’t think being a bit more open minded would be a bad thing.

    We’ve got the ability to win the GF but it’s a mental thing now once again, they have to prove they’ve got the mentality to stay in a tight contest.
    On the one hand that sounds like Cunningham’s style and look where that got us. On the other hand would you argue that Murphy, S••••horpe or Sonny Nickle didn’t have the X factor

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    Quote Originally Posted by eddiewaringsflatcap View Post
    Though I largely agree, I thought in the first half we weren’t far off what you advocated. We switched off to allow Philbin in and down the short side for the BMM try. Other than that we were ok and they defended excellently.

    The second half was a huge issue. We tried to play at 200 miles per hour and seemed intent to dictate; the latter is fine if applied with discipline but Saints showed little respect for the ball. The issue was not only dropping the ball but that Warrington just went into bend but dont break defence. In other words allowed us to gobble up yards because they knew they were faced with little more than one out rugby focussed on quick ptbs and a few set plays theyve seen all before later in the set. It was a desperate performance.
    I’d love to know what Holbrook said at half time for them to play like they did in that second half. We needed to be patient and show a bit of composure. Had we just played out our sets and kicked well (basically what they did which wasn’t anything special) instead of throwing 10 aimless passes each play we’d have had a chance. We went behind and panicked for the whole second half.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Pasty View Post
    On the one hand that sounds like Cunningham’s style and look where that got us. On the other hand would you argue that Murphy, S••••horpe or Sonny Nickle didn’t have the X factor
    He’s right though. The fancy stuff only tends to come off once you’ve laid that groundwork.

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    How refreshing would it be for Hicks to come out and apologise for such a howler in a showpiece occasion for the sport.

    I got that decision fundamentally wrong and it changed the momentum of the game from minute 3.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tez the Saint View Post
    I think a lot of credit needs to go to Warrington. Winning a final or any big game is about having a game plan that exploits weaknesses in the opposition and having the discipline to stick with it and be relentless with it. That’s exactly what they did yesterday so fair play to them. That’s twice in less than 12 months they’ve done it too us and knocked us out of competition.

    I just don’t think we’re as good as we think we are to be honest right now. We’ve had 12 + months to prepare for that exact game and once again we can’t deal with a team who completes high, kicks accurately, chases hard and shows some discipline defensively. We play some nice stuff at times through the league but we just don’t have that steel and focus right to stay in the big games when it gets tough.

    When a team plays as Warrington did yesterday, or Catalan did last year, there are periods of the game where you just have to match it: complete your sets, kick, chase, don’t make mistakes. We are totally unable to do it and we panic and lose concentration. Not far off 20 errors says it all really I think.

    Any talk or words such as “x factor”, “attacking shapes” or comments about our halves, I massively disagree with. To score tries in big games you have to put them under pressure, you have to stress the defence. You do that by completing your sets, keeping the ball in play and by making sure that there is continuity in the game. We didn’t cause Warrington any stress because we kept making mistakes so their defence was fresh, clear headed and therefore they were able to make good decisions and shut our attack down.

    As fans, I’d like to think it’ll be a bit of a turning point. There is nothing wrong with being positive and supporting your team but some of the comments this week were pretty disrespectful IMO. We seem to be very quick to criticise and judge other players, other clubs, other tactics and write them off. I don’t think being a bit more open minded would be a bad thing.

    We’ve got the ability to win the GF but it’s a mental thing now once again, they have to prove they’ve got the mentality to stay in a tight contest.
    What an excellent, considered post this is. Couldn't agree more Tez.

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    Quote Originally Posted by The Chief View Post
    How refreshing would it be for Hicks to come out and apologise for such a howler in a showpiece occasion for the sport.

    I got that decision fundamentally wrong and it changed the momentum of the game from minute 3.
    there's about as much chance of that as there is me winning the grand national on a blackpool donkey.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tez the Saint View Post
    I think a lot of credit needs to go to Warrington. Winning a final or any big game is about having a game plan that exploits weaknesses in the opposition and having the discipline to stick with it and be relentless with it. That’s exactly what they did yesterday so fair play to them. That’s twice in less than 12 months they’ve done it too us and knocked us out of competition.

    I just don’t think we’re as good as we think we are to be honest right now. We’ve had 12 + months to prepare for that exact game and once again we can’t deal with a team who completes high, kicks accurately, chases hard and shows some discipline defensively. We play some nice stuff at times through the league but we just don’t have that steel and focus right to stay in the big games when it gets tough.

    When a team plays as Warrington did yesterday, or Catalan did last year, there are periods of the game where you just have to match it: complete your sets, kick, chase, don’t make mistakes. We are totally unable to do it and we panic and lose concentration. Not far off 20 errors says it all really I think.

    Any talk or words such as “x factor”, “attacking shapes” or comments about our halves, I massively disagree with. To score tries in big games you have to put them under pressure, you have to stress the defence. You do that by completing your sets, keeping the ball in play and by making sure that there is continuity in the game. We didn’t cause Warrington any stress because we kept making mistakes so their defence was fresh, clear headed and therefore they were able to make good decisions and shut our attack down.

    As fans, I’d like to think it’ll be a bit of a turning point. There is nothing wrong with being positive and supporting your team but some of the comments this week were pretty disrespectful IMO. We seem to be very quick to criticise and judge other players, other clubs, other tactics and write them off. I don’t think being a bit more open minded would be a bad thing.

    We’ve got the ability to win the GF but it’s a mental thing now once again, they have to prove they’ve got the mentality to stay in a tight contest.
    That’s a good post, making some good points.

    We played Champagne rugby all season last year and this, but when you come up against a team who are able to roll their sleeves up and play simple, we lost our way......
    Get busy living, or get busy dying.

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    Quote Originally Posted by The Chief View Post
    How refreshing would it be for Hicks to come out and apologise for such a howler in a showpiece occasion for the sport.

    I got that decision fundamentally wrong and it changed the momentum of the game from minute 3.
    Hes been happy to do other interviews in the lead up to a cup final regarding the fan of a club in the final.

    Now he has everyone talking about him again, will have done wonders for the guys ego

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dux View Post
    He’s right though. The fancy stuff only tends to come off once you’ve laid that groundwork.
    To be fair I think he is usually right. Sometimes I just find his posts a bit sanctimonious but I have no doubts that he knows his stuff where rugby is concerned. I should really have just soaked it up but I didn’t feel inclined to do that today. Tomorrow I will though. Maybe he should apply for a coaching job. Maybe he is already doing a coaching job. Who knows

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