From the Stands: Round 14

I’d say it was a frustrating loss against the Broncos but aren’t they all?

This was probably a special kind of frustrating though.

That curse of not quite putting together an 80-minute performance came back to haunt us big time.

When you drift out of games, the opposition will generally capitalise. When you drift out against the Broncos, you get punished big time. And that’s what happened.

It was a 20-minute period the boys would want to forget but was one they must not forget.

That period was a lesson in exactly what not to do.

Not once, not twice, but three times we were caught sliding on our line and Darius Boyd was there to capitalise.

The boys won’t even need to watch the video to be disappointed with that.

One of the things the Broncos do very well is weather tough periods and take their chances the next time they’re offered.

That’s something our boys need to emulate as they continue to improve.

Every team has those periods where the ball is dropped, tackles are missed, and the bounce of the ball just doesn’t go your way.

It’s about how you play through those tough periods. No doubt, the boys know they need to play through them better than that.

Take away that period and the Raiders were better than the Broncos at various stages. It was a strong start but the boys just couldn’t capitalise.

Fast forward to the final ten minutes, and the boys took advantage of a 15 man tiring Broncos side.

They came home strongly but unfortunately it was too little too late.

Had the Raiders held on a little more successfully through that tough period, the two points could’ve been theirs. It just wasn’t to be.

In saying all that, there were a few positives to take out of the game.

Down 18-0, then 24-0, the boys could’ve dropped their heads and lost by 40. But they didn’t.

They showed a little grit, tried their hand, and came up with some points.

Baptiste once again showed just how he can change a game. He was fast, he was fresh and he played direct. His double was well deserved.

One of the other real highlights was the Raiders debut of Zac Santo.

His positional play was outstanding. He diffused everything that came his was in defence and that one on one strip to save a try was brilliant.

He played well above his weight and far from letting the team down, he added some real value. It speaks volumes about his attitude. Great performance.

Moving on, our boys have a well-earned rest next week. So put your feet up, take the two points and get ready to cheer our boys on against the Titans. Can’t wait!