NRL: Stephen Kearney insists Warriors will continue to improve during season

The Warriors secured back-to-back wins to start the season for the first time since 2009.
The Warriors secured back-to-back wins to start the season for the first time since 2009. Photo credit: Photosport

The New Zealand Warriors have opened their season with back-to-back wins for the first time since 2009, but coach Stephen Kearney knows his side can only get better. 

The Auckland club ran in four tries in their 20-8 win against the Gold Coast Titans in front of over 14,000 at Mt Smart Stadium on Saturday.

The Warriors dominated most of the match, but 11 errors and a 69 percent completion rate prevented Kearney's side from scoring more points in the contest.

Kearney was glad to secure consecutive wins but admitted post-match that his side needed to show more composure with the football.

"The thing we're not getting carried away with is that I think we have a lot more improvement in us - we recognised that today in the sheds after the game, but it was a real tough grinding win and it was good to get the result," Kearney said.

"I thought we scrambled well and kept our shape together. I knew it was going to be a really tough week, coming back from a big trip so it was really about focusing on getting our jobs done and I thought the boys did that pretty well.

"It was a real tough contest and what I liked about the lads' performance is that they stayed in the battle and Roger (Tuivasa-Sheck), again, came up with some really big plays."

Captain Roger Tuivasa-Sheck was once again inspirational at the back, making some crucial try-saving tackles, and running 215 metres with the ball.

Roger Tuivasa-Sheck.
Roger Tuivasa-Sheck. Photo credit: Photosport

The fullback said that player morale is as high as it has ever been after a strong start to the season.

"There's a lot of confidence in everyone just doing their role," said Tuivasa-Sheck.

"That's what we talk about, the coaches give us a plan, and we just expect everyone to do their jobs.

"And the way they're doing it at training it gives them the confidence to turn up and do it on game day, and it showed today."

Titans coach Garth Brennan only had positive things to say about the Warriors in his press conference after the match.

"I said during the week it was probably the best 80-minute performance I've seen from the Warriors, in my time being a footy fan," said Brennan.

Titans coach Garth Brennan.
Titans coach Garth Brennan. Photo credit: AAP

"They were controlled and backed it up there again today.

"Full credit to the Warriors, they were really good today and when they start throwing that amount of football around, and it sticks they're a hard side to defend.

"They've got some class there with (Shaun) Johnson and Tuivasa-Sheck, and when they're in that sort of mood, they're in for a big day."

The Warriors have now won 14 of their last 15 games against the Titans.

The Warriors now aim to make it three-in-a-row with next Saturday's away clash with Canberra. If the Warriors win, it will be the first time in the club's history they would have won their first three games to start the season.

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