For better or worse, last night's win against Cairns Saints had almost everything. The result, Power 10 12 72 to Saints 1 1 7 does not reflect the level of entertainment witnessed for three and a half quarters. It also does not show the way the game ended on a low with the reports and all in brawl.
The cold hard facts say that we won the game we had to win to stay in the finals race. Saints threw everything at us and were unlucky not to have more on the scoreboard. Full credit here to our defence who continued to shut down the opposition. Especially so in the case of lesser lights like James A and RaRa who played as if they believed they were meant to be there. Our conversion on the night was effected by the driving wind and rain. We won the game in the 2nd and last quarters kicking into a howling gale, keeping them goal less.
But the price will be paid for those last few minutes. Two players red carded and one other yellow carded as a result of an all in brawl will have big ramifications on our season. The tribunal will deliver their verdicts and the kids will hopefully learn from it. But the longer term issue is whether our season be railroaded by those few minutes of ill discipline and lack of care?
And, sadly, this is what will be remembered after what had been a highly entertaining game, played at a frantic pace with wet weather skills that defied logic at times. Those first three quarters really had all the fun of the fair.
As coach, I need to put those last minutes behind me and address the kids who play next week to walk away. Play football. Concentrate. We have a highly winnable game next week to square our season ledger after 9 rounds. That is the next focus.
I just hope the boys see the folly of last night, and how the team and individual can stand to lose so much for a few moments of brain fades and testosterone overload.
But, to those who put their football first, congratulations. Our mission was to win and we did. We are still in the finals race. Our season could sill offer a great deal, and that is what I will be focused on.