While Dolphins Intrust Super Cup coach Adam Mogg is disappointed Tweed Seagulls ended his side’s 2021 final campaign in emphatic fashion, he is already looking to next year and says there is plenty to get excited about.
The Dolphins lost 41-22 at Tugun on September 25, in hot and windy conditions. A strong northerly breeze favoured Tweed in the first half and they were ahead 18-0 after 14 minutes.
The Dolphins composed themselves and narrowed the lead to 18-12 before half-time, with tries to Will Partridge and captain Cameron Cullen, but Tweed dominated with four more tries in the second half.
Tries to the Dolphins’ Jeremy Hawkins and Preston Riki were not enough to bridge the gap as the side struggled to build momentum.
Before the game, Mogg said his players would need to nullify Tweed’s star halfback Toby Sexton. They were unable to do it and he scored 17 points from one try, six goals and one field goal.
“Sexton was the best player on the park, he won man of the match and deservedly so. He has an NRL kicking game which made the difference,” Mogg said.
He said Tweed’s kicking game was superior and the windy conditions were not a factor.
“I was disappointed with some of the preparation going into the game. Preparation has to be spot on … you don’t win big games without good preparation,” Mogg said.
“It was disruptive preparation for us that led to some pretty average performances on the day. We just didn’t prepare collectively as a team, away from training, and you don’t get another chance to get it right next week.”
The focus has now shifted to preseason training, which is likely to start at the end of October, and the 2022 season.
“I’m excited about the (Vodafone) Warriors being based at Redcliffe. That will aid continuity,” he said.
He is looking forward to meeting with officials from the NRL club to work out the plan for season 2022, so both clubs can improve performances on the field.
“There’s not a lot of things we got wrong. We had 47 players (come through) and played in a second elimination semi-final,” Mogg said.
“Every one of the players bought into what we wanted to achieve this year. The Colts have also used a large number of players. It shows we have good systems and processes in place.
“I’m proud of the fact that we had some kids from Colts play first grade. That hasn’t happened at our club for a long time.
“And the affiliation with the Warriors helped them progress some of their juniors that are future NRL stars.”
He said at the end of a season there were always little things that the coaching team looked back on and learnt from.
“I’m really proud of the fact that we protected our brand throughout the season. It’s bigger than any individual,” Mogg said.
“There are some areas we need to work on in terms of our transition game.”
Mogg said not having Trai Fuller and Sean O'Sullivan at the back end of the year ‘hurt us’ but seeing Josh Beehag have a good game as full-back in the final game of the season was a plus.
The majority of the squad will return in 2022 but there are a few players training and trialling with NRL clubs and they might need to be replaced.
Mogg said the prospect of the ARL making an announcement about the 17th team soon was also exciting and he hoped it would be the Dolphins.
“Queensland needs another team. There’s no doubt about it, so hopefully it’s us,” he said. “There’s a lot to look forward to.
“I’d like to thank the supporters and the board for their support this year. We’ve got a great supporter base and fan base and hopefully we’re lucky enough to get the 17th NRL team … fingers crossed. It would be a great boost for rugby league.”
GRAND FINAL DETAILS
Norths Devils V Wynnum Manly Seagulls
When: Sunday, October 10. Kick-off is at 3.10pm
Where: Moreton Daily Stadium, Redcliffe
Tickets: Family tickets from $55.
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