Attitude has paid off: Maguire
South Sydney coach Michael Maguire says the positive attitude showed by his players over a tough three weeks of successive losses paid off with Saturday night's 26-6 win over the Dragons.
"I thought the energy the boys put in there, the way they have gone through this last three weeks and put the energy into their footy and the way they've practised at training – their training has been really good over the last three weeks," Maguire said after the game.
"It just didn't turn up on the field last week (a 30-18 loss to Canberra at ANZ Stadium) but this week it did. The way they got around each other through the week and worked hard through this period allowed us to get that performance."
He said it is now a case of building on that and turning in similar performances in the coming weeks.
"We know that's our style of game that we played and achieving that each week is the way they went about it and put their heads down at training. We saw that over the last three weeks, we weren't happy with that three-week period and it was up to us to make sure we go about that and fix it and I think we showed that tonight."
Despite intense media scrutiny, Maguire said he didn't feel like his side had been under any pressure because he knew what the side was capable of and would show it eventually.
"I believe in my players and I believe in what they're capable of doing and it's about sticking to that," he said.
"We learned a lot out of tonight's game, we need to make sure we're consistent with it."
Rabbitohs captain John Sutton said the side hasn't been playing that well on the field but that confidence was still high.
"We knew if we played to our standard like we did out there tonight we could get a win," said Sutton, the most capped Rabbitoh of all time. "The boys played really well tonight. I thought our forwards were great going up the middle and we scored some good tries."
Maguire said he was happy with the new-look hooker rotation of youngsters Apisai Koroisau – who debuted in Round 4 against Canberra – and debutant Cameron McInnes.
"I was really happy. For two young players – obviously Api played last week and the way Cam came in there I've got two real quality players and they played off the back of each other which was great," he said.
"[Using two hookers] worked tonight so there's no reason why I wouldn't do that again. I thought they worked really well together."
He also lauded the enthusiasm of young forward Kyle Turner, as well as rugby-bound forward Sam Burgess.
"Sam was outstanding; the amount of work he did tonight was incredible. They all just work for each other and I was just really pleased with how they defended," Maguire said.