TONY Smith expects his Warrington Wolves side to regroup after defeat to Castleford Tigers and believes the loss can spark the focus they need to challenge this season.
Smith’s side suffered their biggest defeat since a 62-18 loss to London Broncos in August 2012 at the Mend-A-Hose Jungle, but have a break from Super League next week when they host Doncaster in the Challenge Cup.
However, Smith recalled Wolves’ last Challenge Cup triumph and remembers a heavy defeat to Catalan being somewhat of a turning point in their season.
“I can remember a feeling of going to Catalan about two years ago and getting pumped by a similar score,” said Wolves’ head of coaching and rugby.
“But I think we went on to win the Challenge Cup that year and finish the year very, very strong so some of these days can really bring you together as a group and focus you.
“That’s what we’re going to have to do, we’ll get out there again in Super League in a couple of weeks’ time and our focus will turn over to Challenge Cup this week and we’ll regroup and refocus.”
Smith admitted it was a disappointing display in attack from his charges, especially after promising performances from the likes of Gareth O’Brien in the win against Widnes on Friday.
“Nobody shone for us,” he added. “I’m not saying people didn’t try, but there wasn’t too many shiners or glowing lights in our team.
“It was a tough day for young half backs to shine, a tough day for a lot of our players to shine but we’ve had other days like this in the past and you have to bring yourself together.
“They were a lot sharper, particularly second half, and I’ve asked some of my staff to see if they can go and unpack some of our attacking game; I think it was left on the coach.”
Smith felt the Tigers, who have lost only twice this campaign compared to Wolves’ five defeats, put in a strong defensive display.
“It wasn’t a great day for us and Cas played well,” he explained. “We didn’t handle their ability to capture defensively, they’re very, very good at that, probably the best at it at the moment; catching you and holding you up in the air and buying time.
“If you don’t deal with that, if you can’t combat that then they are going to buy themsleves a lot of time and they had a lot of time today. We’re going to improve on that.
“When those sorts of tactics are working well they’re hard to combat and we didn’t combat it well at all today.”