Goannas defence put under scrutiny in trialPHOTOS

HITTING THE LINE: Cessnock’s Brendan Hlad attracts three Pickers defenders during Saturday’s 36-all draw at Maitland Sportsground. Photo: MARINA NEILSmailes said the defensive effort at times was disgraceful as the Pickers carved their way through the centre of the field to scored tries from kick offs and their opening two sets.
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“I think it was a scoreline like an under 20s game that’s the first 36-all draw I’ve ever been involved in,” he said.

“It was poor to be honest with you. Our attack was good in patches but the defensive misses were disgraceful really.

“They scored two tries off their first two sets and they ran through us off kick offs twice and made 60 metres that sums up our defence today.

“They did some good stuff with the footy, don’t get me wrong for a second, but you can’t do it off the back of defence like that.

“It’s too tiring and too mentally draining.”

The powerful pairing of centre Shaun Metcalf and Marvin Filipoon the right caused plenty of headaches for the Pickers, even when they didn’t have the ball.

The Pickers stacked their defence to counter the strong running duo and halfback Liam Foran took advantage on three occasions taking on the line and spreading the ball to the open side where the Goannas had extra numbers and scored tries.

Pickers coach Trevor Ott said conceding 36 points was not going to stack up once the season starts.

But Ott did have the benefit of a 44-0 win in reserve grade and the knowledge his defensive combinations are only going to strengthen with more time on the field together.

Goannas defence put under scrutiny in trial | PHOTOS Action from Saturday’s clash between Maitland Pickers and Cessnock Goannas. Photos: MARINAL NEIL

Action from Saturday’s clash between Maitland Pickers and Cessnock Goannas. Photos: MARINAL NEIL

Action from Saturday’s clash between Maitland Pickers and Cessnock Goannas. Photos: MARINAL NEIL

Action from Saturday’s clash between Maitland Pickers and Cessnock Goannas. Photos: MARINAL NEIL

Action from Saturday’s clash between Maitland Pickers and Cessnock Goannas. Photos: MARINAL NEIL

Action from Saturday’s clash between Maitland Pickers and Cessnock Goannas. Photos: MARINAL NEIL

Action from Saturday’s clash between Maitland Pickers and Cessnock Goannas. Photos: MARINAL NEIL

Action from Saturday’s clash between Maitland Pickers and Cessnock Goannas. Photos: MARINAL NEIL

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