McCrone backs under-fire Orford - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

McCrone backs under-fire Orford

Ian McCullough 04/04/2011 07:29:20 PM Comments (0)

Canberra playmaker Josh McCrone revealed under-fire halfback Matt Orford was "devastated" after his error cost the Raiders victory against the Gold Coast on Saturday.

Leading 22-16 with 40 seconds to go at Canberra Stadium, Orford knocked-on at the back of the scrum right in front of his own posts.

The mistake led to the equalising try from Anthony Laffranchi before Greg Bird slotted home the winning field-goal to take the two points for the Titans in extra time.

"It was very disappointing to lose an unloseable game, and Matt was devastated afterwards and blamed himself," McCrone told AAP.

"But we made 11 errors as a team over 80 minutes and they weren't all made by Matt, as a team we have to take responsibility when we lose and when we win."

Orford, who won the 2008 Dally M Medal, was signed under much fanfare by the Raiders from English side Bradford at the start of the year.

However, he is yet to taste victory for the Green Machine and under huge pressure to keep his place in the team from exciting youngster Sam Williams who impressed in the round one win over Cronulla.

"We are all firmly behind Matt, but he has been around long enough not to let it get him down, he is a proven performer and I have no doubt we will see his best form," McCrone said.

"He was fine at training today and in good spirits."

McCrone has also played at halfback for the Raiders, and said he felt sympathy for Orford.

"When you play in that position any mistake you make is magnified, and the fact he is a big-name player means the pressure is on him to perform," he said.

"It is tough coming in to a new club, but my form could be better as well and that would help him, and I'm sure there are other players who will say the same."

The Raiders take on fellow strugglers Penrith at Centrebet Stadium on Saturday and McCrone said the team needs to improve and start showing the form that took them to the finals last year.

"People seem to forget that we lost Terry Campese and Alan Tongue and Josh Dugan has been injured as well," he said.

"We feel we are not too far away from a win and we'll take a one-point win against the Panthers to get back on track."

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