Featherstone Rovers: We paid price for believing our own hype, says Duffy

John Duffy.
John Duffy.

FEATHERSTONE ROVERS’ players have been ordered to stop falling in love with themselves.

Rovers’ four-game winning run crashed to a halt when they were beaten 34-20 at Halifax last Sunday.

Victory would have lifted them into second spot in the Betfred Championship, but instead they dropped to fourth and are just one point ahead of London Broncos with Leigh Centurions two behind.

Rovers should get back on track at second-bottom Swinton Lions tomorrow (1.30pm), but coach John Duffy reckons last week’s result was a rude awakening.

“I think we probably started taking things for granted in our performances because we’d had some good results,” he said.

“We were disappointed in ourselves and I thought we would perform a lot better than we did. It looks like the players had [started to believe their own publicity], when I watched it back.

“We allowed them to gain momentum on us and we went away from what we said we were going to do. It is not good enough in the big games.

“We let ourselves down and we need to fix it up.”

Swinton, Duffy’s former club, have won only three of their 20 league games this year, with two draws.

But the coach warned: “It will be tough there.

“They are scrambling for points as well.

“It is a big, open pitch and they like to play with the ball so we are going to have to be really good defensively.”

Cutting out needless handling errors is another priority.

“We had sorted that area of our game, but it has dropped back in,” observed Duffy. “It’s personal, it’s not a big play or a read or anything technical, it’s just keeping hold of the ball.

“Sometimes we are trying to get up too quick and we’re not gripping the ball well enough.

“We went through a phase of that a few months ago and we thought we’d fixed it up. We have to make sure we are a lot better this weekend.”

Rovers are clinging to a place in the top-four and have a tough run-in, but Duffy insisted: “We can’t allow ourselves to look at the table and start getting panicking and getting nervous. The positive is it is still in our hands and we just need to make sure we are performing.”