Tony Benson’s comments

Date published: Monday, February 15, 2010

Roughyeds coach Tony Benson was disappointed by his team’s 28-14 defeat at Hunslet — a loss that he felt was more due to Oldham’s failings than to Hunslet’s superiority.

Benson’s boys were even denied a bonus point when home debut-maker Tommy Haughey crashed over in the corner for his second try on the very last play of the game —- and that means that Oldham will have to beat Sheffield Eagles next time out to stand a chance of making it into the last eight of the competition.

Handling mistakes, infringements in possession and forward passes, often the result of runners coming on to the ball too soon, gave the Hawks far too much ball and as Oldham tired in the later stages of the game the vast experience and know-how of players like the March twins, Richard Chapman, Haughey and Neil Lowe came into play.

“We were poor and it wasn’t even a case of them winning as much as us giving the game away,” said Benson, whose side were blevel at 14-14 at the hour mark.

“Looking for a positive, to play so badly and still be in touch for 70 minutes of the game shows that there is something there and that it isn’t all doom and gloom.

“If we had completed 10 more sets it could have been different. But it is all ‘ifs’ and we didn’t do that.

That is why we lost – we can’t win without the ball.

“We gave the ball up too easily and didn’t get through our sets. I think we were trying too much rather than just playing and you can overdo that and end up in a situation where you are too scared to do anything.”

One thing that did please Benson, whose side have now lost two of the three Northern Rail Cup pool matches played so far, was the players’ attitudes following the defeat.

“It was awful and it was as frustrating for the players as it was the coaching staff and no doubt the people in the stand who had paid to be there,” the Roughyeds coach added.

“We had a team meeting afterwards where we said we have to focus on what we need to do right and work hard to do that. The players, to their credit, are as disappointed as anyone else.

It is our third game but we should be better than that.

“I take this competition very seriously and genuinely want us to be in the quarter-finals.

“So it was disappointing as those were three points we should have had.”