It’s been a year to forget north of the Spit Bridge, but Manly skipper Pita Godinet is making the most of his time with an outgoing group of players.
The Sea Eagles, who have shown glimpses of their potential this season but have a notoriously poor defensive record, put forward a spirited performance in Round 24 to defeat a 12-man Tigers outfit. After being dominant in the opening half, however, the Sea Eagles let their opposition back into the contest.
“Obviously when you’re down to 12 men you’ve got to lift a bit more and you’ve just got to fight a bit more,” Godinet told NSWRL.com.au. “They dug deep as well, but we were just fortunate enough to get away with the win.”
Godinet, who returned to Australia this year after two seasons in the English Super League, will have to say farewell to number of players upon an expected cleanout at Brookvale for next year. Maintaining motivation after finals football became unrealistic has been a challenge, but one that the group has cherished.
“We came into this game knowing we had two games left and we just had to empty the tanks and do it for each other,” the 28-year-old said. “We’re not going to play for each other after this season; there’s a few boys that want to move on and I think it’s probably the last time I’m going to play with a few of them.
“There’s a few boys who are off contract, so we just don’t know what’s going to happen. We just all spoke to each other to just dig deep and just enjoy it.
“I know it’s a bit too late now with these wins, but we just had to make do with what we had.”
Godinet himself is likely to remain at Manly in 2017 and despite the on-field results, has been happy to be back in Australia. The former Warriors utility is as determined as ever to hit the ground running for an improved season next year.
“It’s good to be back obviously I had a little stint over in England but just to be back in the NRL and amongst the boys,” Godinet said. “Hopefully I can just get a good, proper off-season and pre-season in and come back strong for next year.”
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