NRL Rd 16 - Dragons v Raiders
WOLLONGONG, AUSTRALIA - JULY 03: Zac Lomax of the Dragons celebrates winning the round 16 NRL match between the St George Illawarra Dragons and the Canberra Raiders at WIN Stadium, on July 03, 2022, in Wollongong, Australia. (Photo by Mark Nolan/Getty Images)

St George Illawarra Dragons interim coach Ryan Carr has heaped praise upon returning duo Zac Lomax and Jacob Liddle after the Red V recorded a victory over the Sydney Roosters at Kogarah on Friday evening.

The duo sat out of first-grade during the final two weeks of former coach Anthony Griffin's tenure.

Griffin, who was sacked on Tuesday, was blasted by fans for the move that pushed Lomax and Liddle back to reserve grade.

Carr said earlier in the week that Griffin had been involved in the discussion to switch the team, with Lomax and Liddle touted for a return after last weekend's heavy loss to the North Queensland Cowboys in Townsville.

Carr said he was impressed with the duo making their return to first-grade.

"They did. They both competed great," Carr said during his post-match press conference.

"Like I said before the game, they had a great attitude last week even though it's hard news for them to take playing reserve grade.

"They both competed hard for their teammates and both of them had a really selfless performance which was good."

It took Carr just days after Griffin's axing to reverse another poorly thought out change from Griffin, who had moved Moses Suli and Zac Lomax to the opposite edges that they had played on last year during the opening ten weeks of the year.

Carr reverted that on Friday, and both players had arguably their best games of the season. The interim coach said the Dragons had to make a change.

"We obviously haven't been getting the results we want, so you can continue to do the same thing or make a change, and whether that change had any impact, I don't know," Carr said.

"But Suli is a great team guy. I asked him during the week if he'd play on the left and he jumped at it straight away.

"I can't say that it contributed too much, but we had 17 blokes out there who wanted to compete for each other."

Carr stopped short of saying the move back would be permanent though.

"We will go week-by-week at the moment. I can't tell you what we are going to look like next week. Obviously the Origin period is coming up so there is a bit going on there, but wherever anyone plays in a Dragons' jersey, they have a job to do and they know that these boys," he said.

The Dragons next play against the Dolphins Redcliffe to kick-off Round 13 minus Origin players on Thursday evening.


  1. He seemed very careful to say nothing that directly criticised Anthony Griffin.

    He is not the league’s most articulate coach, but he chose his words carefully. For that he deserves a compliment.

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