Bulldogs to rebuild from the bottom up for next season

29/06/2018 // by admin

The Kurri Kurri Bulldogs’ season to ­forget ended in disappointing fashion on Saturday when South Newcastle hammered them 62-10 at Townson Oval.
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The Kurri Kurri Bulldogs’ season to ­forget ended in disappointing fashion on Saturday when South Newcastle hammered them 62-10 at Townson Oval.

Souths went into the final round of the season needing to win, and win well, to stand an outside chance of snatching the Real NRL minor premiership from Western Suburbs.

And from start to finish, the home side ensured they’d give themselves that opportunity.

Despite the wet and wintry conditions, they raced out to a 38-4 lead at half-time and didn’t take the foot off the pedal in the ­second half, with a further four tries sealing the 52-point drubbing.

Kurri Kurri coach Phil Williams remained upbeat despite the result.

“The guys tried and the effort was there, but the execution was poor,” he said.

“The score maybe doesn’t quite reflect the game, but Souths are a very good football side and that’s how it goes sometimes.”

The already depleted Bulldogs were hit by the late withdrawals of Ben Wyborn, Dan Thorogood and Jay Stevens in the week leading up to the game.

It allowed Williams to hand a first-grade debut to 17-year-old Kyle Smith, while Lachie Macbeth and Ben Edwards were also given their first run-on starts.

The new inclusions took the number of players Williams used for the season to 41 and, while he acknowledged it would be a hard lesson for the young players, he said it would bode well for future seasons.

“It’s a tough initiation for them, but they get to see first-hand what a good first-grade football side is like and they’ve now got six months to realise what first-grade football is about,” he said.

The Bulldogs’ eighth-place finish is a far cry from making the grand final 12 months earlier, but Williams said comparing the squad to last year’s squad was unrealistic.

“In my eyes the expectation of going back-to-back grand finals was never going to happen,” he said.

“If you look at our side last year we had four or five ex-NRL players and this year we had one.

“What we needed was to rebuild from the bottom up, and while we’ve still got work to go we’ve started that process.”

South Newcastle 62 (Tries: Widders 2, Pywell 2, Faavae-Eli, Edwards, Schnieder, Luppiat, B Tupou, Rotumah, Briggs, Luppiat, Goals: Briggs 7) defeated Kurri Kurri 10 (Tries: Hill, Craig; Goal: Birch).

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

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