Warriors must shake slow starts - Mannering

DAVID LONG
Last updated 05:00 12/04/2013
Simon Mannering
Photosport
MISSED CHANCES: Captain Simon Mannering says the Warriors need to stop playing catch up if they are to start winning more games.

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Simon Mannering would love it if, for once, the Warriors are the first team to score some points in a game.

They play the Raiders in Canberra tomorrow night in a round six fixture, but in all five of their games so far this campaign they've had to play catch up on the scoreboard after leaking early tries.

In their first three encounters they failed to score any first half points, against the Eels, Roosters and Sharks and it wasn't until Elijah Taylor's try in the 39th minute against the Cowboys that they finally registered a point in the opening stanza.

While they were able to come back to win that game 20-18, they lost by a similar margin last weekend to the Rabbitohs, having given them an 18-6 lead at the break.

Warriors coach Matt Elliott made the point after that game that two of Souths' first half tries were flukey length of the field breakaways, while Bryson Goodwin's try came as a result of an illegal strip.

However, the Warriors can't keep falling behind in games and when they apply early pressure they must get some reward out of it.

"Last weekend they [the first two tries] were against the run of play," Mannering said.

"But it does make it hard on yourself if you're chasing points from the outset, which is what we've done this season pretty much from the outset.

"It would be nice to get on the board first, but the main thing is that you're there at the end."

The NRL points table has yet to really take shape, other than with Souths and the Storm, who are the only unbeaten teams.

There are 10 teams who've lost more games than they've won and the Warriors are still just one win away from being in the top eight.

But Mannering appreciates that the time has come for the Warriors to make their run. Defeat tomorrow night would leave them with just one win from six game, a poor return from a team that's supposed to be on the improve. Following the bye next weekend for the Anzac test, they travel to Melbourne to play the Storm and a more daunting task doesn't exist in the NRL.

"We are not trying to look at it like that, but we are trying to tick these wins off," said Mannering.

"We are going into a week off and we want to do that after a good performance, because there are a long time between drinks if we don't play well.

"It is still early days, but this is an important one for us.

"From round one to now we've been up and down, but in the last two performances we've had back to back consistent efforts, in one we got the result and in the other we just missed.

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"As long as we keep improving and carry on being consistent, we can grab a few more wins."

- Fairfax Media

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