Oh dear, Oh dear, Oh dear!
In the Tiger in Beverley after the game, we all raised a glass for a toast, as we hailed the efforts of the young kids in those two home victories towards the end of the regular season, against Widnes and Salford. For, without those four points we would have been in the middle eight’s and, with our current issues and on our current form, likely heading for the million-pound game at best.
It’s going to be a strange few weeks isn’t it? It would have been nice to think that those making the decisions on retention and possible recruitment would be casting a close eye over the player’s in black and white throughout the meaningless challenge that is, for us, this Super 8’s competition, and that in turn the players would be playing for their future contracts.
This would then be a time for players to make their mark and bag a place in the squad for 2019. However, that incentive has gone, because we have signed up most of our current players to long term contracts already. Indeed, some that we all thought might be off have actually been retained for another year, so there is little room for manoeuvre at all, and thus, some would say, little for the team to play for either.
Surely the imperative going forward had to be that we should put on some sort of show so that everyone starts to look forward to next season with some hope. That was the challenge that faced us and Wakefield were the first part of it but it’s sad to say on Friday night, we failed miserably.
Our performance was poor but our resolve and mental strength in that second half was awful. There was a lack too of any sort of courage or inspirational play and despite all the rhetoric that preceded the game, Scott Taylor apart, we looked like a team who all had new contracts and were safe for the next campaign and who thus had nothing to play for. In the 2016 and 2017 seasons we had strength, size, resolve and an unending will to win, all qualities that if they were on show at all at the KCom on Friday, were only possessed by our opponents in the last quarter; but it appeared to me, by us.