Catalans Reaction

ROYCE Simmons pulled no punches as Saints lost 34-32 to Catalans at Langtree Park.

Whilst praising the quality of the Dragons’ play to overturn a 26-8 deficit he questioned the officiating and bemoaned his side’s defending.

“Things started to go wrong for us when we had four penalties against us in a row and that meant we didn’t have possession for long periods,” he said. “They had a lot of ball in our end of the field and we didn’t have that.

“They played really well and chanced their hand, backed themselves and scored some tremendous tries from a very talented side who are well coached.

“But at the end of the day they choked us to death in the first half and got round our necks. Any side who plays against us tries to stop James Roby from running – and they are good tactics – but you can’t turn those rules around in the second half to suit the opposition.

“We got a couple of penalties in the first half, five I think and it should have been around 35. In the second half we got penalised and some of the things especially one of the incidents, I couldn’t understand why. I thought it was a very ordinary performance from the referee, but take nothing away from Catalans.”

He continued: “In saying that we let in soft tries which were disappointing. We let points in this week and last week and we have to look at that as a team. We are trying to do things one out and not as a unit. We are trying our hearts out but are trying to solve them on our own. We come out of the line as individuals too many times and didn’t work as a complete unit. We need to be doing the same thing in defence.

“For the first 40 we were fantastic, played well and defended pretty good. When we didn’t get the penalties in the second half, we didn’t handle that situation very well. But as I said, I will be ringing Stuart Cummings this week as some of those penalties were an absolute joke compared to the way we got hammered in the first half.”

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