Bruised Saints take stock after ‘tough’ defeat to Hull

St Helens coach Keiron Cunningham has admitted that losing to Hull FC last week has left his team stinging.

But the former Wales international has also acknowledged that some of his players did better than he gave them credit for straight after the game.

“It was a real tough weekend,” he said.

“A lot of things come out of defeat, and, on the whole, you can learn more out of defeats than you can out of wins.

“That’s my view anyway. You get a good look at the players who want to stand up and be counted.

“You get a look at players you want to hang in there and graft for you. There was a few of them at the weekend.

“I probably didn’t give a lot of players credit who deserved it. There was a few players who busted their a**es for me.

“They went tough for me, they went really hard, they wanted the victory and they do that week-in and week-out.”

Cunningham, however, also felt that there were players who did not pull their weight, and it was up to him to find out why, and to help them re-focus on their goals for the season.

“It’s the guys who didn’t do that, you’ve got to question why they didn’t do it, and what are their motives between now and the end of the year. What do they want to do?” he added.

“So there were a few home truths, and it was quite tough. It’s been a tough weekend, it really has.

“I expected the players to rise to the occasion on Friday night and really have a crack at Hull.

“We just didn’t respond. It’s that lack of response which concerned me a little bit.”

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