Scott’s ‘mixed feelings’ after Challenge Cup exit
Reporter: Roger Halstead
Date published: 01 April 2019
Oldham head coach Scott Naylor
He was very disappointed with the poor first half, in which the Vikings rattled up 38 of their 54 points, but pleased with the second-half performance in which Roughyeds competed much more solidly to score three unanswered tries and match their Championship opponents try for try --- three apiece.
In fact, if you take away the first six minutes of the new half, Roughyeds scored 14 points to Widnes's six in the last half hour.
Said Naylor; "I have mixed feelings. We started the game well, but then we started to give them far too much respect, too much time to do the things they do best and too much good field position.
"Over most of the first half we weren't aggressive enough in defence and clinical enough in our line speed and you can't get away with that against one of the best teams in the Championship. I rate them alongside Toronto Wolfpack.
"In the second half we had a lot more belief and the way we played for most of the second 40 minutes made us realise how very different it might have been if we had played like that from the beginning.
"Considering Widnes's quality and the levels they play at on a regular basis I was pleased with how we played in the second half.
"In the first half especially, they slowed us down in the ruck, but we let them play at their own speed and you can't do that when you're opposed by quality players."
He said it was now time to draw a line under this Coral Challenge Cup defeat; take the positives out of it; and turn the spotlight once again on the Betfred League 1 promotion push and next Sunday's important game at Newcastle Thunder.
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