Slow starts hampering Uralla Tigers

FIGHT BACK: Brody Dexter supports Ethan Callies as he runs towards the defence line against Manilla, the week prior to the Dungowan match.

FIGHT BACK: Brody Dexter supports Ethan Callies as he runs towards the defence line against Manilla, the week prior to the Dungowan match.

The first 40 minutes of games have been a thorn in the side of the Uralla Tigers. 

The Group 4 second division team have found themselves on the wrong end of the scoreboard on a number of occasions at the end of the opening half with strong finishes helping them scrape home.

Such was the case against Dungowan Cowboys on Saturday where the Tigers found themselves down 14-6 at the break. 

They scored three tries in the second stanza to claim the win 24-20 but coach Brett Monley wasn’t impressed with the performance. 

“We had a couple of sin bins, I wasn't really happy about that,” he said. 

“We only completed one set of six in the first half.

“They [Dungowan] were very unlucky, they were the better side, they should have won.” 

While they didn’t start positively, Monley said the performances of a handful of individuals kept Uralla in the game. 

“Kelcie Davies had an outstanding game, he is a second rower and a good leader in our side,” he said. 

“He kept our composure together.

“Jake Brett had some big bustling runs and was pretty outstanding to watch.” 

The Tigers hope they can string together a better opening half when they host Bingara Bullets on Saturday. 

Uralla will have to rely on players to step up after losing some through injury. 

Monley said they will have to clean up their penalties in the early stages to feature late in the season. 

“This is a home game for us and we need to make sure we win,” he said. 

“We beat them in the first round, didn't play our best football either but got a win so hopefully we can get another win to keep our momentum going forward again. 

“I had a good chat to our boys on Tuesday about our discipline killing us.

“We are a good side, I have got them fit, we are going well and we are coming home strong in the second halves but god help us if we click on the day and we complete our sets of six in the first half and stick to our structure of play, we will give any team a run in the competition.

“We give away too many penalties. 

“We just have to control the ball, if we control the ball and play out our sets of six we will be hard to beat.”

The club’s ladies league side have proved a force this season and were once again dominant against Dungowan. Alyce Walsh ran in five tries in the 30-10 win with Lauren Acton scoring one. Hannah Skewes kicked three goals. 

They sit second on the ladder and Monley predicts they will be one of the teams to beat in the battle for the title. 

Alyce Walsh.

Alyce Walsh.

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