As a long-time proud and passionate Sydney Roosters supporter it pained me to see them put up such a listless and uninspiring performance against the North Queensland Cowboys.
The Roosters had so much to play for, with a spot in the NRL grand final on the line.
The lack of intensity and costly errors at crucial stages would seem to suggest that the attitude of a lot of the players wasn’t what it should have been and that they weren’t ‘up’ for the match.
The Roosters were the favourites and deservedly so with the home ground advantage, a week off which should have worked in their favour, and a psychological boost after beating the Cowboys 22-16 only seven weeks ago in Round 20.
That being said, the inability of the Roosters players to concentrate for the full 80 minutes has been a worrying trend that has developed and been evident for a while now. It was all too clear to see again in their loss to the Cowboys.
Make no mistake about it the Cowboys deserved their Victory and full credit to them for another inspired, passionate and outstanding performance. They wanted it more and outplayed and out-enthused the Roosters in so many facets of the game.
For Jared Waerea Hargreaves to also come out in the press during the week challenging Jason Taumalolo and then not delivering on his big talk showed a real lack of respect for Taumalolo, but also for the Cowboys team, you could have read into it a hint of cockiness and arrogance.
In future, JWH maybe you should spend more time concentrating on your own backyard rather than talking yourself up and firing up the opposition, talk is cheap if you don’t deliver on it.
Sure, some fans will be quick to point out that making the preliminary final was a great effort and that fans shouldn’t criticise their team when they lose, but let’s not sugarcoat the result.
The Cowboys were without Johnathan Thurston and Matt Scott yet they dominated the Roosters for large portions of the match.
By My reckoning the Cowboys players have desire, belief and spirit in bucket loads, it’s a pity that some of the Roosters players don’t also have some of those attributes – or if they do they didn’t play like they did against the Cowboys.
It can only be hoped that Trent Robinson and the Roosters players do some serious soul searching in the off season and come back bigger and better next year, because they definitely didn’t do themselves justice against the Cowboys.