‘UNACCEPTABLE’ was director of rugby Rowland Winter’s damning verdict on Coventry’s performance after their 25-game winning home run was ended by Darlington Mowden Park.
Coventry led three times and looked set to pull away when two Max Trimble tries immediately after the break put them 31-21 up.
However, Park dominated the rest of the game, finding gaps in Coventry’s defence too readily to secure a 46-36 win which guarantees them a second-placed finish in National League One.
“We just weren’t good enough,” said Winter.
“From 45 to 50 minutes onwards, Darlington looked like the side that had won the league and they had the confidence and the freedom to play.
“They were quicker than us to most of the breakdowns, they were sharper than us, and our set piece didn’t continue the strong start it had.
“You don’t concede 46 points at home, it’s not acceptable.
“We’ve beaten good sides here in that winning run and shown that we’re more than capable, but the things that have put us there are our defence, our hard work and our will to win, and we didn’t have any of that.”
Winter stressed he will be hoping for better this Saturday when Coventry complete their momentous season with a home clash against Hull Ionians at the Butts Park Arena.
“I think the boys have taken their foot off the gas and when you do that these things will happen,” added Winter.
“We were missing some of the bigger players and I think they’re the boys you depend on a little bit.
“I think some of the chaps need to have a little look in the mirror and realise that they’ve got to pull their fingers out as well and they can’t rely on these people.
“At half-time we just got the boys to focus again and we came out and scored two quick tries when we kept the ball rather than aimlessly kicking it away.
“After that we needed to put the game to bed, but we didn’t have the game management and the leadership to do that.
“It was a poor show in front of the big crowd. We let them down and we let ourselves down as well.”