WHILE praising his side's effort, Gary Chambers says Warrington Wolves were not clinical enough to overhaul St Helens in their play-off eliminator tie.

Despite fighting back to level the scores at 8-8 in the second half, The Wire succumbed to a 16-8 defeat to end their 2023 season.

And Chambers believes a lack of composure and know-how in the game's critical moments was what cost his side what would have been a famous victory.

Here is everything the interim Wire boss said post-match...

Q: What’s your overriding feeling after that game?

GC: Plenty of effort, but not enough smarts.

We can’t do some of the things we did in these types of games and expect to get a result.

There was loads of effort and we were putting the ball in good areas, but they were making breaks on us which is lapses in concentration.

Saints are good at doing that and we’ve got to be better at it.

Q: Do you think that is what stopped you from kicking on having pulled yourself back level at 8-8?

GC: There were penalties in there and dropped balls, although I know the weather plays a part in that.

It’s the finer details of the whole thing that we need to be better in.

To win these types of games, you need to be a bit more clinical and that’s not necessarily with the ball. It’s without the ball as well.

Q: You’ve mentioned the effort a lot. Given what you were up against, do you feel like you couldn’t have asked for any more from the players in that kind of area?

GC: I couldn’t ask anymore and we’ve got a good squad there.

It was a game I fully expected we can go out and win, and at least compete in.

We competed, but we came up a little bit short.

There’s plenty to work on in terms of key areas and some detail to put right, then we won’t be far away.

Q: In terms of the raw materials and foundations for Sam Burgess to come in and build on, do you feel like they are there or does he need to rip everything up and start again?

GC: Over the last six or seven weeks, the team has been competitive and went toe-to-toe with some really good teams.

It’s been tight and that’s all I could probably wish for in this spell – to help make them more competitive and they’ve been in most games.

If they’re in most games next year for that sort of period, they will get better results.

He can’t rip it all up – that would give him too much to do. There’s plenty of positives there for him to work with but it’s the small things now.

He’ll look at those and address them. It just needs tinkering with and some areas put right.

Q: You were without Paul Vaughan which is a big enough blow but then Tom Mikaele goes down in team run yesterday – how much did that impact what you wanted to do?

GC: It doesn’t really – that’s what you have a squad for and there’s enough quality in that team.

Yes, we were missing some really good players and some big men who can give you some quality time, but there was enough there to get a result.

Pete Mata’utia came in and did a good job I thought. Matty Russell was struggling with his groin coming into the game so we had to be a bit more creative with our bench rotations to potentially cover him.

Q: Do you feel like you’ve come a long way in these past six or seven weeks?

GC: We’ve got better, I think. To be competitive and to be in games always gives you a chance.

That’s happened but ultimately, it’s over to Sam now to pick that up and take it forward.

Q: In the first half, were you worried at 8-0 down?

GC: Not really – at 30 minutes I thought the intensity dropped a little bit in Saints’ line speed and I can see us starting to make that extra yard and have the ability to put that extra pass in.

That’s what we thought would happen but ultimately, we didn’t execute as well as we should have done on the back of some good kicks.

Q: At 8-8, were you thinking you really could win this?

GC: All the way through, even up until the last 10 minutes or so I felt we were in this.

That’s been the case on a number of occasions with St Helens this season – there’s been some good tussles there.

Q: In terms of the club, it is an improvement on last season but how disappointing is it for a club of this ambition and resource to go out at the first hurdle of the play-offs again?

GC: It’s tough – this club needs to be playing in the big games.

That’s ultimately where we’re trying to get to.