Manly Warringah Sea Eagles Holden Cup Coach Wayne Lambkin had a clear message for his players at training on Monday night - be accountable for your actions.
Lambkin could not hide his disappointment when reflecting on the 66-14 loss to the Sydney Roosters last Friday night. The Roosters scored 40 unanswered points in the second half after leading 26-14 at the break in a performance he described as totally ‘unacceptable’.
“We started off really well and we got to the spots where we knew we could score again. We just were not willing to roll our sleeves up and get dirty to stay in the game,’’ Lambkin said.
“That’s the disappointing part. The game was there to be won even though it sounds silly when you get beaten 66-14. When you lead 8-0 after 12 minutes, have completed your first six sets, and did everything you spoke about, you have got to roll up your sleeves and get dirty and do the little things right.
“It was a case of giving up, and that’s not something a coach says lightly. I just felt we did and it is certainly not acceptable.
“The boys were all devastated but I need to see it in action. I don’t want to hear apologies. I want to see their actions by how they respond this week.
“There is no excuse for that performance.”
Lambkin said the players were made to watch the full replay of the game at training before holding their own ‘honesty meeting’.
“They had a meeting without me being in the room. It put a bit of ownership back on them. It is about accountability,’’ Lambkin said.
“We have spoken about gratitude and the position they are in playing for a club such as Manly and how they are in the NRL system, but they are just throwing it away with performances like that.”
The Sea Eagles have slipped to 10th place on the ladder on the back of three straight losses after two fine wins in the opening two rounds. They now take on the fourth placed St George-Illawarra Dragons who go into the match with four wins from five games.
“If we don’t see a vast improvement and a real desire to get out there this week, I will be very disappointed after a big loss,’’ Lambkin added.
“They certainly know they have to turn up against the Dragons.”
The clash with St George-Illawarra Dragons has been transferred to H.E Laybutt Field, Blacktown, on Sunday, August 9, at 11am in order to protect the playing surface of Lottoland ahead of the NRL game on Saturday.