Frustration got the better of Catalans says boss Steve McNamara

Josh McAllister
Steve McNamara

Catalans head coach Steve McNamara says frustration got the better of his players during their play-off eliminator loss to Leeds at Stade Brutus.

Rohan Smith’s Rhinos advanced to the semi-finals with a 20-10 victory, including a hat-trick for outgoing centre Liam Sutcliffe. They will face either Wigan or St Helens in the next stages of the play-offs.

Catalans had led 4-0 early in the game thanks to two penalty conversions from Sam Tomkins, before indiscipline cost them dearly.

Half-back Mitchell Pearce was sent to the sin-bin on either sides of the break. Hooker Michael McIlorum was shown a yellow for a high shot on opposition James Bentley in the 60th minute. Meanwhile, Wales international Gil Dudson was sent off for a headbutt on Aidan Sezer. It means the prop forward could miss several games during the upcoming World Cup through suspension.

Catalans 10-20 Leeds: Liam Sutcliffe hat-trick secures semi-final spot for Rhinos

Steve McNamara: ‘We didn’t handle the situation well enough’

Dragons coach McNamara said: “We didn’t play football well enough tonight. We tried really hard but we just couldn’t find any rhythm in the game.

“We’ve had to fight, bite and scratch to put ourselves into this position. But tonight the number of injuries and changes we have had to make took their toll.

“Leeds have been in better form than us. We just didn’t have enough reps on the field for fluency and accuracy to get the job done.

“Frustration got the better of our players and we didn’t handle the situation well enough. In the last 20 minutes we could have fought our way back into the game but our discipline let us down.”

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