Cleary wants Warriors to lift game - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Cleary wants Warriors to lift game

21/08/2009 12:24:20 PM Comments (0)

With three rounds remaining in a poor NRL campaign, Warriors coach Ivan Cleary has called on all at the organisation to lift their game.

Reluctant to blame any individuals for the club languishing in 14th place, a frank Cleary accepted that few of the cogs at the Warriors club had operated to peak performance in 2009.

They host the 13th-placed Canberra Raiders on Sunday in a game that has little riding on it other than pride for both sides.

Cleary said that was no reason not to carry motivation into the Mt Smart Stadium fixture and halt a slump which has seen them win one of their last eight matches. They plumbed new depths with last week's 40-4 loss to Parramatta.

For the first time this season the coach admitted he could have done things better, along with management and the players, who all started the campaign with high hopes but have won just six of 21 games.

He believed an upswing to the end of the season could carry through to next year.

"Our organisation, starting with me, everyone's got to lift their game," Cleary said.

"A lot of players have probably not necessarily had their best seasons but I guess it's right through the club.

"That's what's needed in the future, starting this week, that everyone lifts their game a bit."

The Warriors' attack has reflected their mood in recent weeks. They average just 15 points per game, the second-worst in the competition.

Critics who believe their only attacking ploy is a cross-kick to giant winger Manu Vatuvei got more ammunition last weekend at Parramatta. The Warriors peppered Vatuvei's left wing aerially in their rare visits to the attacking zone and managed to get one try out of it.

Cleary was unapologetic about the tactic given his side's lack of attacking chances but agreed this week was time to expand their playlist.

"It made sense (against the Eels) to go with something we've got a chance with," he said.

"But definitely our attack's been something that has let us down throughout the year.

"We've been working on a few things. It comes with confidence I guess but that's something I'd like the boys to go after a little bit this week."

Cleary said the competition was tougher this year than previously during his coaching tenure.

Even the Raiders are a quality outfit who hammered the Auckland-based club 38-12 in May.

In their past three matches, the Raiders have beaten the competition-leading St George Illawarra Dragons and the Brisbane Broncos while going down narrowly to the second-placed Bulldogs in Sydney.

The Warriors have been boosted this week by the return of captain Steve Price from a rib injury while experienced centre Jerome Ropati is restored.

They end their season with difficult matches away to the Bulldogs next week then at home to the Melbourne Storm.

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