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Wednesday, 23 July 2014

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Seeds praises Whitehaven defence as Gateshead shut-out

David Seeds hailed Whitehaven’s defensive strength after they kept Gateshead Thunder scoreless in yesterday’s opening pre-season clash at the Recre.

David Seeds photo
David Seeds

Haven notched three converted tries to get their campaign off to a strong start, but it was their effort to deny a point to the lively Championship One visitors, who last week showed plenty of promise in a 22-8 defeat against Hull KR, that most impressed the coach.

“I counted only a couple of times that they broke us, and that was the biggest positive to come out of it – the defence and that nil on the scoreboard,” said Seeds, who handed debuts to seven players among the 21 on show.

“The lads came off the field with smiles on their faces. We will work on a few things on Wednesday, but generally I was really happy with the performance.

“There were some good individual performances. Neil Thorman at full-back impressed me, as did Cain Southernwood. We got a lot out of the game. I think everyone got more than 25 minutes of game time.

“I made 20-odd changes, so there was a lot of disruption, but they handled it very, very well. That was a much-improved Gateshead team, and credit to them.

“For 20 minutes, Gateshead looked like a team that played last week and we looked like one that hadn’t, but we then got in to a routine.

“We got to good areas but our discipline with ball in hand and general discipline let us down a little.”

Lee Doran, Chris Smith and Paul Cullnean touched down in the 18-0 win. Head coach Dave Woods, on a family break at home in Australia – booked before he took over at Haven – will be back for next week’s trip to Barrow.

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