Coach Barnard warns Tigers to improve discipline

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Sheffield Tigers’ South African head coach Thiu Barnard has warned his players to be more disciplined on the pitch or risk throwing away games, after a narrow 29-21 victory away to mid-table Huddersfield on Saturday.

Tigers secured their seventh victory in the league, keeping them firmly in fifth place in National 3 North on 38 points, just one point behind fourth placed Rossendale.

And though pleased with the side’s first 10 minute performance, which saw them race into a 17-0 lead, Barnard was disappointed with the side’s lack of discipline which he believes could have cost them the game.

“At the start we were brilliant,” he said.

“We blew them away and it worked because we were sticking to the game plan and everything we had worked on in training.

“But then our discipline just seemed to go out the window, I think we conceded something like 20 penalties and if we hadn’t have put in such a good defensive display in the second half it could have been a different story.

“Our line outs and scrums were very good but we need to work on staying switched on for the whole game.

“We have to concentrate or in other games silly points will be thrown away.”

The Port Elizabeth coach is targeting a top four finish this season, but he is wary of this weekend’s 12th placed opponents Morley as they are renowned in the league for their physicality.

“We must take advantage of playing at home this weekend and even though they have slipped down the league they have a very big pack of forwards and will bring the game to us,” explained the former Durban Collegians and Eastern Province player.

“We need to be picking up these vital points before Christmas and it won’t be easy as after Morley because it’s two tough away games - including the December 13th game against leaders Sandal.

“It’s a very difficult division to get out of this year and the title is there for the taking.

“I want a disciplined and professional performance against Morley and we have to tighten up our game in every area and not give anything away.”