Tony Benson

Date published: Monday, February 1, 2010

Roughyeds will waste no time in getting down to more hard work this week after their big effort at Leigh, promised coach Tony Benson after his side’s gutsy showing in a 24-12 Northern Rail Cup defeat by the big-spending Championship side.

While expressing his pride at how well Oldham had played, Tony B was anxious to keep his feet planted on terra firma.

“These are very early days in the season,” he said, “and as a group we know there is a lot of work to do and a lot of improvements to be made.

“What I can say is that we are all ready for the challenge and all geared up to do the necessary work, starting tomorrow.”

The Kiwi boss said he was “really encouraged” by what he had seen on a snow-covered pitch.

And he went on: “We put in a big effort and to be honest I was disappointed we didn’t win. I think we could have done, certainly. With limited preparation there were a lot of encouraging signs, not least how we defended and scrambled and also how the half-backs worked together although it was Neil Roden’s first run-out of the year.

“Don’t forget they scored two tries while we were down to 12 men. Before that we had put them on the back foot only to release the pressure on them by conceding six penalties in a row and having a man sent to the bin.

“When we conceded again early in the second half we went 18-0 down, but I was proud of the way we fought back to finish the stronger side and to finish on a high note.

“We hung in there, scored three tries and got on top — and if we had played another ten minutes who is to say what would have happened.”