Remarkably for a side with two of the tallest and most athletic wingers in the NRL, the Warriors managed just 11 tries from kicks in 2019 – the fewest of any club – while conceding among the most.
Tries from kicks can be a bit of a lottery but also a useful last-play option against a resilient defence that refused to buckle under repeated sets at the line.
The two main ingredients are a playmaker with an accurate kicking game (or preferably a couple) and a few athletic outside backs who are good in the air. The latter are the ideal ingredient to defusing tries from kicks also.
The Raiders scored 26 while the Eels, Storm and Roosters all managed 25 – each more than double the Warriors' tally. The Knights and Bulldogs with 13 each scored the second-fewest.
Meanwhile only Manly (27) the Knights and Wests Tigers (both 24) conceded more than the 23 tries from kicks that came against the Warriors.
With just 11 tries scored from kicks and 23 conceded, the Warriors' differential of -12 was the worst in the NRL in 2019, just ahead of the Knights (-11) and Sea Eagles (-10).
Unsurprisingly the best three teams in the competition were the best three at scoring and defending from kicks in Canberra (+17), the Storm (+14) and the Roosters (+10).
With both Blake Green and Chanel Harris-Tavita boasting deft short kicking games and the likes of David Fusitu'a, Ken Maumalo and Roger Tuivasa-Sheck among the most athletic backs in the game, plus new rules potentially advantaging attacking players attempting to score aerial tries, it is a strategy the Warriors would do well to turn to more often in 2020.
That same back three also needs to do a better job at ensuring opponents don't come down with attacking kicks in the Warriors' in-goal as often.