Warriors eye tougher times ahead
It might have been their biggest and most convincing victory of the year, but following a 48-0 crushing of the Parramatta Eels on Saturday night the Warriors were just happy to have ticked off another goal in their journey towards the finals.
The win made it three in a row for the Kiwi club, who finished a streak of home matches in ultimate fashion as they sliced and diced through a woeful Eels side who were without skipper Jarryd Hayne.
But with difficult fixtures against top eight sides Brisbane (away) and Manly (home) coming up in the next fortnight, the Warriors weren’t getting carried away despite the convincing nature of their latest victory.
“We haven’t dropped a game [in the last month], but that’s not to say we are going to get too ahead of ourselves or get carried away,” said halfback Shaun Johnson, who clocked up 20 points against the Eels thanks to a try and a perfect eight from eight off the boot.
“We are well aware we have a big challenge next week and that is all we are focusing on now.
“We will enjoy this and then get ready for it.
“Little things [need to improve] from my view, I missed a few tackles where I just wasn’t applying myself, and then not taking little opportunities. We just have to keep working hard and we will get there.”
While labelling the performance as his side’s best of 2014, coach Andrew McFadden was under no illusions as to what they would face next week against the Broncos at Suncorp Stadium.
“We just have to keep working hard. Points don’t always come that easy and certainly won’t next weekend against Brisbane,” he said.
“We can’t get too far ahead of ourselves about this performance, we still have to turn up next week and that is what we will focus on during the week.”
With the latest block of challenges now complete, the Warriors say they will attack the remaining eight games of the season two or three matches at a time in order to keep their focus.
If they can overcome the Broncos and Sea Eagles the run home becomes significantly easier, given they then face the competition’s three lowest ranked sides, the Raiders, Sharks and Knights in consecutive weeks.
However fullback Sam Tomkins, who was among the Warriors’ best against the Eels, scoring two tries and breaking the line on three occasions, said nothing can be taken for granted in the NRL.
“There are a lot of teams on very similar points and we know if you slip off for a game you can find yourself down the table,” he said.
“We want to strive to be consistent and continue that right through to the playoffs.
“We knew we had three home games back-to-back where we could try and dominate, and we have done that.
“The next block I am not sure how it will be, the coach will decide that, [but] we need to cement our spot in the eight.”