Rugby: Attack outstanding, defence not so much

Tony Brown
Tony Brown
Score 50-plus points and the attack must be going fine.

But concede 40-plus points and defence obviously needs a bit of work.

Those were exactly the thoughts of Otago coach Tony Brown after he watched his side manage to get home over Manawatu in a high-scoring game last night.

''Going into the game we always wanted to focus on our attack and we created some really good tries. The boys' accuracy on attack was outstanding,'' Brown said.

''But we just could not stop their momentum. I thought we were passive defensively right throughout the game.

''I guess that is the frustrating thing. A great performance but just a little lax on defence.''

Brown said the good thing was the side won and came away with five competition points, which would stand it in good stead for the coming weeks.

The side scored some fine tries, and Brown said he could not understand why fullback Peter Breen was not awarded a try near the end.`I'm pretty sure that when you are lying on the ball it is a try. I think everyone in the ground bar one person thought it was a try. We'll have to hear the explanation about that one.''

In the end it did not matter as TJ Ioane went over from the resulting 5m scrum.

The Otago coach praised the play of his forwards, especially loose forward Gareth Evans and lock Tom Franklin.

He also praised the performance of replacement prop Aki Seiuli, who had to play all of the second half in the unaccustomed position of tighthead prop.

Hugh Blake took a bang to the ankle and was forced off while captain Paul Grant did not come out for the second half after receiving a bang on the leg.

Stand-in captain Liam Coltman said he was ''absolutely knackered'' after the game, but said the try by Inanee gave the team the impetus to get home.

''That got the boys really fizzed up and after that we knew they wouldn't come back,'' Coltman said.

''We scored some great tries, and the defence was good at times. We just need to be a bit more consistent there and we'll be right.''

Otago's next game is against Southland at Forsyth Barr Stadium next Saturday.


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