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18 Mar 2018 13:30
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  •   Home > News > Sports > Rugby League

    New-look Roosters stutter in NRL opener

    Sydney Roosters coach Trent Robinson says his new-look spine has had plenty of time to build combinations following a rusty showing in a round-one loss.

    - article from

    Sydney Roosters coach Trent Robinson believes his new-look spine has had enough time together for him to expect early results in the NRL season.

    Despite the blue-chip signings of Cooper Cronk and James Tedesco, the premiership favourites barely fired a shot in a 10-8 upset loss to the Wests Tigers in their opener on Saturday.

    Cronk showed why the club allowed Mitchell Pearce to walk away with an impressive first half that included two forced dropouts and a 40-20 kick, but was kept quiet in the second.

    Tedesco struggled to make an impact and was incessantly booed by his former crowd, particularly after he bombed a certain try early in the first period.

    Robinson said he was satisfied with a defence that conceded just one try, but was left wanting more from his team with the ball in hand.

    "I thought we tried to do what we wanted to do in attack but there wasn't enough combinations and (we had) high errors," he said.

    He admitted there was an element of his new players struggling for cohesion.

    "I would've expected more play, but you can't have both. You either have a bit more play and you're going to have some errors. But you don't have not much play and high errors," he said.

    "And that's what we had - we had good, strong running without many combinations and high errors. I think that was a big difference in our play."

    The Roosters twice could've crossed in a tightly-contested first half, but their opportunities dried up in the second as their error rate increased.

    A Blake Ferguson try allowed Robinson's side to take the lead, however more ill-discipline allowed the Tigers to steal victory at the death.

    Robinson refused to give his new players the latitude to ease into their attack.

    Asked how long it would take for his spine to gel, he said: "Sooner rather than later. That's what we're working towards. They've had enough time together.

    "But as you can see today, we didn't execute well enough, especially when we had the opportunities in the first half.

    "I think we were trying to force it a little bit. We were trying to just find something, and they were defending well... the difference in the end was the error rate."


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