Dyldam Parramatta Eels second-rower Anthony Watmough has rued the errors of execution that stood in the way of his team coming away with a much-needed two points on Saturday against the New Zealand Warriors.
“We bombed eight tries on the weekend," Watmough said.
"And it's just little things that are costing us games. We’re not getting beaten by other teams, we’re getting beaten by ourselves."
"That’s probably the most disappointing thing. (It’s) just because of silly mistakes, individual mistakes."
“We’ve all been guilty of it, it’s what cost us on the weekend, it’s what costs us nearly every game.”
“We can watch as much footy [video as we want], all the games, but we’ve been in all of them, we just haven’t had that little bit of polish to finish it off.”
“We know we should’ve won and won comfortably on the weekend with the amount of tries we bombed.”
For Watmough, the potential of the young Eels squad harks back to his early days at the Northern Eagles and Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles.
“I think people forget that this team, I think the average age beside myself, is in the early 20s,” Watmough said.
“And you know, we weren’t winning at Manly when I was first there. We were coming second last and third last and we just built that bond.”
“They’re a young team out here and they’ve been mates for a long time, they’ve played a lot of junior footy together; that’s what we had at Manly, and that’s what they’re going to have here over the next few years.”
“There’s a lot of pressure on them but we know we’re building and we know where we got to be at.”
With it comes to questions around potential pressure on Head Coach Brad Arthur, Watmough put his hand up for the playing group and the responsibility they take for the side's performances each week.
“We've just got to get it right on the field,” Watmough said.
“He (Brad Arthur) can’t control on the field. On the field is up to us."
“That’s what we’ve got to learn - all of us have got to learn - as a young team, and for myself in that young team: how to finish games off and finish them off strong.”
Against the Warriors, the Eels line-up included halfback Luke Kelly in the number seven jersey, and Watmough said the media discussion of Brad Arthur's decision to move Chris Sandow to NSW Cup was par for the course for an NRL coach.
“He’s the coach, he’s got to make the tough calls,” he said of Arthur’s decision to drop Sandow.
“I thought Kel went well on the weekend: he organised us, he organised the park really well, we knew what we were doing.”
“Like I said, we've just got to execute and things will be different.”
The veteran second-rower was also philosophical about the question of State of Origin selections for Laurie Daley's NSW VB Blues.
“If it’s my time to hand over the jersey, it’s my time.”
“I’ve had a good run and if it’s meant to be it will be. They’re probably looking at another direction and I’m fine with that.”
“I’ve had a good run, and if he (Laurie Daley) goes in another direction, so be it. I’ll concentrate on Parra if that’s the case.”