The Illawarra Dragons find themselves in the midst of a challenging chapter this season, grappling with unexpected hurdles that have landed them second-to-last on the ladder.

The Saint George Illawarra Dragons took on the Warriors at Go Media Stadium in Auckland last Friday. They lost 18-6 against the Warriors. The Dragons’ woeful season continues, sitting 16th. 

The Dragons have had a poor season, winning 5 from 18 games so far. With only one match left to play against the inform fifth-placed Newcastle Knights, Dragons fans can only hope for a positive end to the season. In the press conference after the game, Captain, Ben Hunt is hopeful for the team.

“We have a really good group of young guys that need a bit more time,” Ben said

”You can’t fault the effort our whole team put in tonight and a lot of those young guys were apart of that.”

The Dragons got off to a bright start, with Zac Lomax diving over to score, but the bunker later ruled that he had knocked it into a Warriors player, disallowing the try. 

14 minutes later on the back of a set restart, the Warriors scored the first points of the game, with Adam Pompey breaking through the line. From there, the Dragons struggled to defend, with Charnze Nicoll-Klokstad scoring in the 20th minute to make it 10-0. 

A Dragons comeback looked possible in the last 20 minutes of the game with Zac Lomax scoring and converting due to a Warriors error, putting the Dragons within a converted try. However with 5 minutes left, the Warriors stopped a Dragons comeback with Addin Fonua-Blake scoring and Adam Pompey converting to make it 16-6. With a penalty goal scored in the last minute of the game, Warriors won. 

Coach Ryan Carr lamented the consistent errors he has seen from his team in 2023. He conceded that another ‘crucial error’ cost his team more points against the Warriors.

“It was Groundhog Day for us,” Carr said. 

“Giving ourselves the best chance to win games and finding ways to not win them in key moments.” 

After the lost, Coach Carr and the Dragons headed back to the drawing board, determined to regroup and bounce back stronger in the upcoming challenges.