We came up a little short: Titans coach - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

We came up a little short: Titans coach

By Wayne Heming 23/11/2009 08:56:44 PM Comments (0)

Gold Coast coach John Cartwright admits his players buckled under the heat of finals football last season but warns they'll be tougher for the experience in 2010.

As his players, including co-captain Scott Prince, went through a series of fitness tests and body-fat examinations on Monday, Cartwright said they had "come up short" in their historic finals series this year.

"When the pressure was on (finals) were probably came up a little bit short," Cartwright said.

"If we get into those games again, I know we're going to be better prepared to go a couple of steps further.

"We learned a fair bit in the pressure situations.

"Melbourne's experience in big games showed. They got better and better as the pressure increased and it's an area we'll look at."

Cartwright was pleasantly surprised with the results of player testing on Monday after a break of almost 10 weeks.

"It's the best shape they've ever come back in to be honest," he said.

Meanwhile Titans chief executive Michael Searle said the club would only be able to offer utility Chris Walker match payments if he resolved his contract dispute with English Super League club Bradford who have dumped him to recruit Manly halfback Matt Orford.

Walker rejected an offer from the Titans to sign with Bradford.

But when Bradford realised they had too many imports they withdrew their two-year, six-figure offer to Walker.

"I spoke to Chris and his manager briefly the other day and told then they need to resolve their issue with Bradford," Searle told AAP.

"If they do that and he wants to stay, the only thing we could offer Chris is a match-fee deal. We're at our absolute cap level."

Searle was wary of speculation linking the club to former Cronulla international Greg Bird, currently appealing against a jail sentence after being found guilty of glassing his partner last June.

"We've got nothing left, all we could offer him is an opportunity on the Gold Coast," he said.

"There's a couple of clubs with a bit more money than us still to spend."

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