Warriors need to bring A-game to Storm ANZAC clash

Published 9:00am 22 April 2022

Warriors need to bring A-game to Storm ANZAC clash
Words by Kylie Knight

The Warriors’ ANZAC Day clash with Melbourne Storm will be an occasion packed with emotion and atmosphere and they will need to be at their best to beat their more favoured opponents on Monday.

When asked what it will take to beat Melbourne in Melbourne, Warriors’ Head Coach Nathan Brown says his side will need to make the most of every minute.

“You certainly need a committed 80-minute performance. When the Storm do lose a game, they generally don’t lose by much. They compete for long periods of time. We’re going to have to get some execution things defensively and offensively … a fair bit of consistency about what we do,” Brown says.

His comments follow his side’s 22-14 loss to the Roosters at the SCG last Sunday, which came despite an 8-6 lead to the Warriors at half-time.

“There’s no doubt we’re improving but I also I don’t think we’ve put two really good halves of footy together yet this year,” Brown says.

“We’ve put some periods of good footy together and obviously our first half was pretty strong the other day but then the second half we started a little slow and then we never really played enough football in the second half.

“We played a Roosters side that came to play. Their line speed was really, really good for the whole period. It never sort of died. It was a very strong defensive performance from the Roosters, how hard they come at us.

“So, we’ve got to take a couple of lessons in playing that sort of aggressive line speed. We’ve certainly looked at it, we’ve certainly got some ways we think we can do a little better and a little smarter next time we play a side that’s that aggressive for that long.”

Silver lining

Brown says while there are lessons to take from the loss, there’s also some confidence in the way they made the Roosters ‘earn’ their win.

“We certainly should take some confidence that if we do get some things right, that we know we can have a shot at some people,” he says.

“Running out defeated is not a good thing, so running out with a belief that if you really got to contest, and attack sides and go at them that you can give yourself a chance.”

Brown says key is playing “sustained football” and “better periods” for longer.

“The biggest downside to our game at the moment is that we do have a period of time that goes for a bit long, where we fall away a bit like the second half against the Roosters,” he explains.

“We just need to learn to swing momentum sometimes and adapt to what’s coming at us a little better at times. They’re good challenges for us but if we can keep working hard at training and get longer periods of footy, I’m sure that consistency will come.”

Embracing ANZAC Day emotion

“ANZAC Day is obviously a big day for both whether it be New Zealand or Australia for different reasons. My dad was a Vietnam Vet, so I know ANZAC Day for our family has always been a day to celebrate and obviously a day of sadness for not only my father but there’s a lot of heartache and loss in the war for a lot of people,” Brown says.

“So, I think most families, whether it be a father, a pop, a granddad … someone’s experienced war somewhere in the family. So, ANZAC Day obviously carries that little bit more emotion.

“At the end of the day, there’s two points every week you play so you shouldn’t need the emotion to make you want to win but there’s no doubt the occasion on ANZAC Day and the occasion it brings … you’ve got the Dragons and Roosters, then the Storm and the Warriors … the four teams fortunate enough to have this occasion.

“It certainly brings for a bigger crowd, it certainly brings for a better atmosphere and a better atmosphere brings more intensity.”

The Warriors play Melbourne Storm in their round seven clash on April 25 at AAMI Park, Melbourne, from 7pm.


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