Sam Burgess during South Sydney's Round 21 loss to Canberra.

Burgess stunned by defensive lapses

South Sydney skipper Sam Burgess was a dejected figure in the post-match press conference after his team's 54-4 loss to the Canberra Raiders, admitting he was "confused" by the way his side defended on Sunday afternoon.

At the venue where the Rabbitohs hoisted the premiership trophy less than two years ago Souths looked a shadow of their former selves, especially without the ball, conceding 10 tries in what was their eighth-straight loss in 2016. 

It was also the 13th match in a row in which they had allowed 20 or more points. 

"It's disappointing to let in that many points," Burgess said after the game. 

"I can't remember the last time that happened at Souths… I mightn't have been part of this club. 

"I'm a little bit confused with how we could let that many points in. 

"We've got to get better, and we've got responsibilities as a professional athlete. We're just not doing it at the moment. 

"There are a number of things that contribute to today's performance. We've just got to get better… we've got to improve."

 

 
South Sydney's competition-best defence from 2014 was nowhere to be seen on Sunday in what was their heaviest defeat in the Michael Maguire era, and their worst defensive showing since they allowed 54 points against the Panthers six years ago.

The Rabbitohs coach tried to find positives from his side's performance, but conceded they simply weren't good enough when it came to holding out their opponents.

"There were moments in the game that I could talk about as various positive things, but when you've had that many points scored against you, it's our defence that was most disappointing," Maguire said. 

"We're a proud club – a very proud club – so to have that many points scored against you is obviously not a nice thing to go through. I guess it'll determine the character of who we become. 

"I thought at times we actually built a fair bit of pressure on them, but you've got to sustain that. We've got periods where we're putting pressure on, but it's being able to go for long periods of that. 

"We did have our opportunities, but down on our line defensively is an area we need to be a hell of a lot better. We're a team that prides ourselves on our 'D' and we haven't been able to say that for quite some time.

"I can tell you there's a fair bit of pain in that change room because it's a place we're not happy being in."