Halifax coach Simon Grix was left disappointed with both his side’s performance and the final result after they went down 31-8 at Leigh on Sunday.
Fax trailed 16-0 at the break and never really looked like recovering in a Championship ‘four pointer’, with the Centurions now two wins clear of eighth-placed Fax on the league ladder.
“The first 40, we were ordinary at best, we just didn’t challenge them,” said Grix, who conceded three decisive tries between the 12th and 19th minutes after having to reshuffle following a knee injury to captain Scott Murrell, who returned to the fray in the second half.
“We executed our plan to a degree, but then we kept going away from it.
“We got to where we needed to be, coming down that left edge, making good metres, but coming off that sideline it was a bit disjointed.
“It looked like too many people were looking to someone else to get us going today.
“If you’ve one or two players who are a little bit off, you can ride it, but we probably had six or seven today, who didn’t turn up.
“We were just lacking some control.
“There are people in the changing room who train various different positions, but when Muzza went off we went to pot a little bit.
“Look, we do rely on him, and teams have dominant individuals, but everyone is rugby league educated enough to know what they need to do.
“We had a chance early on and if Liam Cooper brings that ball in, then the momentum and the confidence swings our way a little bit.
“But we are lacking individually and collectively’; it’s disappointing, there’s a bit to do.
“We were in the game in the second half, making half breaks without really managing to find the polish.
“We just weren’t quite there and I’m not going to say ‘Oh, we’ll be there next week’ because at the moment it’s hard to say that.
“We can’t keep going win, loss, win, loss though because otherwise we are going to find ourselves in a very difficult spot.
“The positive is that we got through reasonably unscathed.”
Fax lost two players to cards from the back pocket of referee Jack Smith; Jacob Fairbank just before half time to a yellow after a scuffle with Toby Adamson and then Dan Fleming 10 minutes from time to a red after a melee sparked by an Adam Tangata’s challenge on half back Josh Woods.
Fairbank’s temporary exit also sparked a minor ruckus on the sideline, with Adamson’s brother, Luke, and Leigh’s assistant coach Paul Anderson prompting an intervention from the RFL’s match commissioner as Fairbank headed to the dugout.
“Adamson’s got his hands in Bob’s face and he’s reacted to that, which has hurt us,” said Grix.
“The Fleming one, Adam was late with the tackle, but there were four of them stood round Adam; I need to watch it back because I was watching the play, but I don’t mind Dan looking after his mate.
“It was simmering all game, it happens often with Leigh.
“There’s no love lost between the sides, but their bench getting involved, Adamson talking it up, it’s not how I would like to carry on.
“It’s up to them and the fourth official and the match commissioner and whoever else is down there to sort that out, but they’ve not done in however long so I can’t see it changing now.”