Francis Cummins left embarrassed by woeful start against Catalan Dragons

Manase Manuokafoa was one of few players to impress for the Bulls during their defeat in France

Manase Manuokafoa was one of few players to impress for the Bulls during their defeat in France

First published in Sport Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Photograph of the Author by , Bradford Bulls Reporter

Francis Cummins surveyed the wreckage of the Bulls’ thumping 46-4 defeat to Catalan and admitted: “That was embarrassing.”

The Dragons breathed fire with a comfortable eight-try victory that put a massive dent in the Bulls’ survival hopes.

Cummins’ men made a shocking start which saw Morgan Escare and Michael Oldfield score long-range tries either side of Elliott Whitehead’s 12th of the season.

They never recovered as Catalan went on to score five more tries and leave the Bulls on zero Super League points after 14 games.

Head coach Cummins said: “You can’t give Catalan all that time. Our defence wasn’t good enough and I thought we were embarrassing at the start of the game.

“They’re a good team but we gave them all that possession and came up with some really bad errors in our outside backs.

“It becomes very difficult after that but when you have a handful of players who are way off the pace, as we did today, then we get embarrassed and that’s what happened.”

Despite being boosted by the return of Manase Manuokafoa, Antonio Kaufusi and James Donaldson, the Bulls were collectively way off the pace and did not seem up for the fight.

Asked if he felt the players had let him down, Cummins said: “They have let themselves down and everyone involved in the club down.

“Catalan were good and we even talked at half-time about looking after the ball – then we go and turn it over again.

“When you keep making errors, it becomes a tough day at the office. We were ill-disciplined and Catalan don’t need any encouragement over here.

“I thought Nas (Manase Manuokafoa) did really well and (Antonio) Kaufusi looked intimidating. I thought our middle looked good early on but our edge defence wasn’t good enough.”

Next Sunday’s home clash with Wakefield has now taken on added importance and the Bulls must win to avoid falling further behind.

Cummins said: “We knew Wakefield was a big game anyway and hopefully we’ll have a handful of players who are willing to do a job for the team.

“If we have then we won’t be far away. If half a dozen don’t turn up or decide to do something else, then we will get embarrassed again.”

The Bulls could be boosted by the return of Matty Blythe, Jamal Fakir and Dale Ferguson after lengthy injuries for the Wakefield clash, while Matt Diskin and Chev Walker are also set to be available.

Comments (29)

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8:10am Mon 26 May 14

The Fat Lady Sings says...

So, it appears the season, and survival, revolves around beating Wakefield and London and getting the 6 points back. Does Francis know something we are not privy to I wonder?
So, it appears the season, and survival, revolves around beating Wakefield and London and getting the 6 points back. Does Francis know something we are not privy to I wonder? The Fat Lady Sings
  • Score: 1

9:44am Mon 26 May 14

bullybullman says...

Well that sums you up Franny ! it just shows how you have lost the changing room. You make the players turn up & perform not give them the option. For us supporters this is not acceptable.
Well that sums you up Franny ! it just shows how you have lost the changing room. You make the players turn up & perform not give them the option. For us supporters this is not acceptable. bullybullman
  • Score: 12

10:46am Mon 26 May 14

Thee Voice of Reason says...

The season starts now.
The season starts now. Thee Voice of Reason
  • Score: 0

11:26am Mon 26 May 14

axelf1963 says...

The problem is now props are playing in correct positions and plenty bodies back so what is the excuse now ?
The problem is now props are playing in correct positions and plenty bodies back so what is the excuse now ? axelf1963
  • Score: 7

12:28pm Mon 26 May 14

bullybullman says...

Franny is playing out of position at the moment he should be water boy at Leeds ! His comments are unreal
Franny is playing out of position at the moment he should be water boy at Leeds ! His comments are unreal bullybullman
  • Score: 11

12:36pm Mon 26 May 14

PHILISAN says...

The Club has lost its way on the playing side of things and a shakeup is now very much overdue.No more excuses for shirkers, survival must be the watch word and performance the key word 24/7.Does seem though,that for all the coaching and training through the week...the message is not getting home.The root and branch scenario has been a major failure and unless new players come in soon...a complete waste of time imo.
The Club has lost its way on the playing side of things and a shakeup is now very much overdue.No more excuses for shirkers, survival must be the watch word and performance the key word 24/7.Does seem though,that for all the coaching and training through the week...the message is not getting home.The root and branch scenario has been a major failure and unless new players come in soon...a complete waste of time imo. PHILISAN
  • Score: 3

12:37pm Mon 26 May 14

southernbull says...

Yet again the message is the same......we got hammered, not good enough etc BUT do not worry.....next week we will have Ferguson, Blythe etc coming back so everything will turn out alright.
Would love to find a bookie who will give me odds that come Thursday or Friday this week the same players will be still unavailable.....same story every week, roll on next weeks excuse
Yet again the message is the same......we got hammered, not good enough etc BUT do not worry.....next week we will have Ferguson, Blythe etc coming back so everything will turn out alright. Would love to find a bookie who will give me odds that come Thursday or Friday this week the same players will be still unavailable.....same story every week, roll on next weeks excuse southernbull
  • Score: 6

1:06pm Mon 26 May 14

Forever-Bfd says...

Players who are not prepared to 'turn up and play' should be sacked. Surely this is what is agreed when signing a contract that they actually have to play .Those players who do not are surely in breech of contract. They should be ashamed of themselves. Feel for all those supporters who travelled all that way. Thank god I DIDN'T WIN a place on the bus
Players who are not prepared to 'turn up and play' should be sacked. Surely this is what is agreed when signing a contract that they actually have to play .Those players who do not are surely in breech of contract. They should be ashamed of themselves. Feel for all those supporters who travelled all that way. Thank god I DIDN'T WIN a place on the bus Forever-Bfd
  • Score: 7

1:38pm Mon 26 May 14

raisemeup says...

I see two options to save our season in SL.
a) We bring in a new head coach and let Frannie carry on his learning curve, under a vastly experienced MAN Manager as well as a coach.
Frannie needs to realise that when times are tough he should be on the touch line and visual to his players, displeasure at performance is better seen in the face of the boss straight away.
Do you remember Peter Fox? Watch Brian Mc Dermot, Tony Smith even that fellow Wane and certainly Paul Anderson.Any player underperforming would think twice before upsetting them.
option b) Frannie agrees to step down, but option a) is still the best!
I see two options to save our season in SL. a) We bring in a new head coach and let Frannie carry on his learning curve, under a vastly experienced MAN Manager as well as a coach. Frannie needs to realise that when times are tough he should be on the touch line and visual to his players, displeasure at performance is better seen in the face of the boss straight away. Do you remember Peter Fox? Watch Brian Mc Dermot, Tony Smith even that fellow Wane and certainly Paul Anderson.Any player underperforming would think twice before upsetting them. option b) Frannie agrees to step down, but option a) is still the best! raisemeup
  • Score: 6

1:56pm Mon 26 May 14

fedupwiththeBS says...

FC is good at stating the obvious but there is no mention as to what he is going to do about it; players returning is not going to solve the lack of interest that was evident amongst the players.

Even a week of defensive training will not plug the worst defence in Superleague; a tittle I do not think we have ever held before.
FC is good at stating the obvious but there is no mention as to what he is going to do about it; players returning is not going to solve the lack of interest that was evident amongst the players. Even a week of defensive training will not plug the worst defence in Superleague; a tittle I do not think we have ever held before. fedupwiththeBS
  • Score: 4

2:01pm Mon 26 May 14

AUGUST1964 says...

Cummins said: “We knew Wakefield was a big game anyway and hopefully we’ll have a handful of players who are willing to do a job for the team
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A handful? whose job is it to make sure they ALL do their job,time to go back to second in command Franny and carry on learning from a coach with man management skills.
Bring Nobby or Kear in for the rest of the season.
Didn't do Jimmy Lowes any harm to drop back for while did it.
Cummins said: “We knew Wakefield was a big game anyway and hopefully we’ll have a handful of players who are willing to do a job for the team .................... .................... .................... .................... .................... .................... ...... A handful? whose job is it to make sure they ALL do their job,time to go back to second in command Franny and carry on learning from a coach with man management skills. Bring Nobby or Kear in for the rest of the season. Didn't do Jimmy Lowes any harm to drop back for while did it. AUGUST1964
  • Score: 8

3:14pm Mon 26 May 14

Easy going says...

Woeful start to the game? What about the rest of it? Got to agree with all of the comments above. It seems we are all have been watching different games to the likes of Mr Cummins, what as he been watching? The season starts against Wakefield, Francis think of a better statement. ONE THOUSAND POINTS AGAINST IS LOOMING
Woeful start to the game? What about the rest of it? Got to agree with all of the comments above. It seems we are all have been watching different games to the likes of Mr Cummins, what as he been watching? The season starts against Wakefield, Francis think of a better statement. ONE THOUSAND POINTS AGAINST IS LOOMING Easy going
  • Score: 4

3:37pm Mon 26 May 14

birstallbull says...

Note to Messrs Green and Ferres. If the players cannot put the effort in, the coaching staff haven't the ability to motivate and coach the players to put the effort in. Then why should the fans put the effort in. We as supporters need a coaching staff that recognise what this club means to many people and if the current set up are unable to deliver then I feel that an immediate change is necessary It appears that the message that this once great club is on the brink of losing its Super League status as every week and embarrassing heavy defeat is suffered has clearly not been taken on board. Every game now is a Cup Final and nothing less than 100% total commitment from everyone. including the fans, is required. At the end of the day people who have supported the club over many years know that we are not going to win every game but we like to feel as we leave the ground home or away that the team performed to the best of their ability both as individuals and as a team and that we feel some sense of pride in supporting the Bulls.
Note to Messrs Green and Ferres. If the players cannot put the effort in, the coaching staff haven't the ability to motivate and coach the players to put the effort in. Then why should the fans put the effort in. We as supporters need a coaching staff that recognise what this club means to many people and if the current set up are unable to deliver then I feel that an immediate change is necessary It appears that the message that this once great club is on the brink of losing its Super League status as every week and embarrassing heavy defeat is suffered has clearly not been taken on board. Every game now is a Cup Final and nothing less than 100% total commitment from everyone. including the fans, is required. At the end of the day people who have supported the club over many years know that we are not going to win every game but we like to feel as we leave the ground home or away that the team performed to the best of their ability both as individuals and as a team and that we feel some sense of pride in supporting the Bulls. birstallbull
  • Score: 20

4:25pm Mon 26 May 14

Bev says...

Unfortunately the players are not improving. Adam Henry in particular is very poor positionally in defence and does not respect the ball in attack- we are generally very poorly coached in the backs and I agree we must appoint Nobby or Kear to avoid total implosion.
Unfortunately the players are not improving. Adam Henry in particular is very poor positionally in defence and does not respect the ball in attack- we are generally very poorly coached in the backs and I agree we must appoint Nobby or Kear to avoid total implosion. Bev
  • Score: 8

5:48pm Mon 26 May 14

pjbull says...

And every week of inactivity from the top serves to underline the suspicion that Marc Green neither has sufficient money or concern for the club; merely buying it in order to get back his loan. Mr Ferres ought to include that in his "root and branch" review.
And every week of inactivity from the top serves to underline the suspicion that Marc Green neither has sufficient money or concern for the club; merely buying it in order to get back his loan. Mr Ferres ought to include that in his "root and branch" review. pjbull
  • Score: 6

7:51pm Mon 26 May 14

portugalbull says...

Still on the bus by the time the Dragons were 18 up, came back with some effort but the heads went down as soon as they scored after the break. Sitting on a bus for one and a half days is no preparation. Management should shoulder some of the blame. The fans been calling for defence coach and experienced help for FC for some time but to no avail. Championship look inevitable even if we manage to beat Wakey. On a positive note will have plenty of time to plan how to get promotion out and back to SL.
Still on the bus by the time the Dragons were 18 up, came back with some effort but the heads went down as soon as they scored after the break. Sitting on a bus for one and a half days is no preparation. Management should shoulder some of the blame. The fans been calling for defence coach and experienced help for FC for some time but to no avail. Championship look inevitable even if we manage to beat Wakey. On a positive note will have plenty of time to plan how to get promotion out and back to SL. portugalbull
  • Score: 0

9:41pm Mon 26 May 14

Shipley Paul says...

That's a point that not many have picked up on. One and a half days on a bus then play a make or break game! Great preparation eh? I know we are skint but for crying out loud it can't have saved mega bucks or did the conductor go round collecting fares?
That's a point that not many have picked up on. One and a half days on a bus then play a make or break game! Great preparation eh? I know we are skint but for crying out loud it can't have saved mega bucks or did the conductor go round collecting fares? Shipley Paul
  • Score: -1

9:43pm Mon 26 May 14

Paul from Idle says...

He's a joke end of.....
He's a joke end of..... Paul from Idle
  • Score: 2

7:46am Tue 27 May 14

bradfordbronco says...

Didn't see the game but surprised people are saying the players lacked effort and commitment. In every game i've seen this season the only good point has been the effort the players have put. If effort alone was all that was all that was needed from players and coaches we'd have nothing to worry about. Unfortunately coaches consists more of just motivating and shouting. We need a coach who actually understands defensive techniques and running attacking lines himself and can then pass those ideas onto the players during the week in training.

Its so apparent from watching the team that they are just making it up as they go along with no instructions from the coaching staff. This is causing more errors and just putting more pressures on our paper thin defensive structure.

Time for Cummins and ST Hillare to OFFER to step down. If not time for the board to remove them from their post. It isn't working and I hope we DON'T beat Wakefield which will result in not making the coaching changes.

We will get relegated now, I'm not too bothered it will be interesting seeing new grounds next season. What we must do though is make sure we are ready for next season and have in place a proper coaching structure that brings the right culture to the club so that we can bounce straight back. Preparation needs to begin now and Cummins isn't the man for the job.
Didn't see the game but surprised people are saying the players lacked effort and commitment. In every game i've seen this season the only good point has been the effort the players have put. If effort alone was all that was all that was needed from players and coaches we'd have nothing to worry about. Unfortunately coaches consists more of just motivating and shouting. We need a coach who actually understands defensive techniques and running attacking lines himself and can then pass those ideas onto the players during the week in training. Its so apparent from watching the team that they are just making it up as they go along with no instructions from the coaching staff. This is causing more errors and just putting more pressures on our paper thin defensive structure. Time for Cummins and ST Hillare to OFFER to step down. If not time for the board to remove them from their post. It isn't working and I hope we DON'T beat Wakefield which will result in not making the coaching changes. We will get relegated now, I'm not too bothered it will be interesting seeing new grounds next season. What we must do though is make sure we are ready for next season and have in place a proper coaching structure that brings the right culture to the club so that we can bounce straight back. Preparation needs to begin now and Cummins isn't the man for the job. bradfordbronco
  • Score: 2

7:53am Tue 27 May 14

bradfordbronco says...

Thee Voice of Reason wrote:
The season starts now.
Can't resist a cheap shot. BTW what did you make of Salford crowd against local rivals Wigan. 3,700 !!!!
[quote][p][bold]Thee Voice of Reason[/bold] wrote: The season starts now.[/p][/quote]Can't resist a cheap shot. BTW what did you make of Salford crowd against local rivals Wigan. 3,700 !!!! bradfordbronco
  • Score: 0

7:56am Tue 27 May 14

Thee Voice of Reason says...

bradfordbronco wrote:
Thee Voice of Reason wrote:
The season starts now.
Can't resist a cheap shot. BTW what did you make of Salford crowd against local rivals Wigan. 3,700 !!!!
I would say one should get their own house in order before pointing fingers at others. Bulls have has sub 3000 crowds this season.
[quote][p][bold]bradfordbronco[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Thee Voice of Reason[/bold] wrote: The season starts now.[/p][/quote]Can't resist a cheap shot. BTW what did you make of Salford crowd against local rivals Wigan. 3,700 !!!![/p][/quote]I would say one should get their own house in order before pointing fingers at others. Bulls have has sub 3000 crowds this season. Thee Voice of Reason
  • Score: 0

7:57am Tue 27 May 14

bradfordbronco says...

Also TVOR Castleford v Widnes 5800. Wakefield v Warrington 3600. The game is dyeing even in the heartlands. Do you think the RFL are helping the game or running it into the ground?
Also TVOR Castleford v Widnes 5800. Wakefield v Warrington 3600. The game is dyeing even in the heartlands. Do you think the RFL are helping the game or running it into the ground? bradfordbronco
  • Score: 3

8:00am Tue 27 May 14

bartsbull says...

This was the worst performance from any Bradford side for years these players should hold there heads in shame

I know we have gone through hard times but where as the spirit gone potter got these same player to play there hearst out FC does not

We will not be in SL next year on performancies like this and do not deserve to be .

Even getting points back you still have to win games and unless these players put the effort in they will not get a sl club if we fail on there performance i will support you till the end like many others COYB
This was the worst performance from any Bradford side for years these players should hold there heads in shame I know we have gone through hard times but where as the spirit gone potter got these same player to play there hearst out FC does not We will not be in SL next year on performancies like this and do not deserve to be . Even getting points back you still have to win games and unless these players put the effort in they will not get a sl club if we fail on there performance i will support you till the end like many others COYB bartsbull
  • Score: 1

8:37am Tue 27 May 14

spanglishbull.uk says...

Bradford bronco,
There will not be a S.L. in 5 years unless there is dramatic change in structure and personel from Red Hall.The game will revert to part time with the clubs that are still around.
Bradford bronco, There will not be a S.L. in 5 years unless there is dramatic change in structure and personel from Red Hall.The game will revert to part time with the clubs that are still around. spanglishbull.uk
  • Score: 3

9:14am Tue 27 May 14

JunctionBull says...

What is an embarrasment is the lack of new sound bites. We have heard all of this before - several times! Truth Cummins is what we need. No one would criticise a team for doing their best even if it isnt good enough but what I will say is that the fitness levels of our team are woeful, that and they cannot tackle. They looked tired after 10 minutes. If they are not fit this would explain, in part, the terrible injury problem. Fitness is a coaching thing not a player thing and you need to take a good look at yourself Francis. It is an 80 minute game and the Bulls simply cannot play for 80 minutes. For that reason alone they will not win games. Absolute disgrace and an insult to the fans, who kept this team open before the likes of OK, Green...
What is an embarrasment is the lack of new sound bites. We have heard all of this before - several times! Truth Cummins is what we need. No one would criticise a team for doing their best even if it isnt good enough but what I will say is that the fitness levels of our team are woeful, that and they cannot tackle. They looked tired after 10 minutes. If they are not fit this would explain, in part, the terrible injury problem. Fitness is a coaching thing not a player thing and you need to take a good look at yourself Francis. It is an 80 minute game and the Bulls simply cannot play for 80 minutes. For that reason alone they will not win games. Absolute disgrace and an insult to the fans, who kept this team open before the likes of OK, Green... JunctionBull
  • Score: 2

2:48pm Tue 27 May 14

portugalbull says...

JunctionBull wrote:
What is an embarrasment is the lack of new sound bites. We have heard all of this before - several times! Truth Cummins is what we need. No one would criticise a team for doing their best even if it isnt good enough but what I will say is that the fitness levels of our team are woeful, that and they cannot tackle. They looked tired after 10 minutes. If they are not fit this would explain, in part, the terrible injury problem. Fitness is a coaching thing not a player thing and you need to take a good look at yourself Francis. It is an 80 minute game and the Bulls simply cannot play for 80 minutes. For that reason alone they will not win games. Absolute disgrace and an insult to the fans, who kept this team open before the likes of OK, Green...
You try sitting on a bus for one and a half days and you will find your travel weary. I regularly travel to UK and back and it takes a few days to get over it, never mind playing a game of rugby. Bad management, but coach should have advised against. Why do you think Catalan win at home but not good away.
Does not excuse lack of idea, defensive structure, or technique.
[quote][p][bold]JunctionBull[/bold] wrote: What is an embarrasment is the lack of new sound bites. We have heard all of this before - several times! Truth Cummins is what we need. No one would criticise a team for doing their best even if it isnt good enough but what I will say is that the fitness levels of our team are woeful, that and they cannot tackle. They looked tired after 10 minutes. If they are not fit this would explain, in part, the terrible injury problem. Fitness is a coaching thing not a player thing and you need to take a good look at yourself Francis. It is an 80 minute game and the Bulls simply cannot play for 80 minutes. For that reason alone they will not win games. Absolute disgrace and an insult to the fans, who kept this team open before the likes of OK, Green...[/p][/quote]You try sitting on a bus for one and a half days and you will find your travel weary. I regularly travel to UK and back and it takes a few days to get over it, never mind playing a game of rugby. Bad management, but coach should have advised against. Why do you think Catalan win at home but not good away. Does not excuse lack of idea, defensive structure, or technique. portugalbull
  • Score: 1

8:18pm Tue 27 May 14

Bev says...

I live in Leeds so if it will help I can put up some of the players when we play Cas,Leeds,Wakefield etc and give them a lift to the ground , the rest could cycle to the game!
I live in Leeds so if it will help I can put up some of the players when we play Cas,Leeds,Wakefield etc and give them a lift to the ground , the rest could cycle to the game! Bev
  • Score: 0

8:45pm Tue 27 May 14

bradfordbronco says...

Thee Voice of Reason wrote:
bradfordbronco wrote:
Thee Voice of Reason wrote:
The season starts now.
Can't resist a cheap shot. BTW what did you make of Salford crowd against local rivals Wigan. 3,700 !!!!
I would say one should get their own house in order before pointing fingers at others. Bulls have has sub 3000 crowds this season.
Not in SL. How many of the 3,800 at the Salford game do you think were Wigan fans. The problem in RL now is that most of the houses need putting order thanks mainly to the way the game is being run by your friends at Red Hall.

I know you don't believe they've ever made mistakes and that they run the game so well. But you are the one in a minority NOT me. many genuine fans like me feel the game is being run into the ground and will return to a part time regional sport within in a few years unless the RFL gets its act together and starts running the game for the benefit of the clubs and their supporters not trying to victimise them.

I look forward to your defence of the RFL. BTW the Bulls have been badly run but dont use that as a defence of the RFL. The RFL have questions to answer too
[quote][p][bold]Thee Voice of Reason[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]bradfordbronco[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Thee Voice of Reason[/bold] wrote: The season starts now.[/p][/quote]Can't resist a cheap shot. BTW what did you make of Salford crowd against local rivals Wigan. 3,700 !!!![/p][/quote]I would say one should get their own house in order before pointing fingers at others. Bulls have has sub 3000 crowds this season.[/p][/quote]Not in SL. How many of the 3,800 at the Salford game do you think were Wigan fans. The problem in RL now is that most of the houses need putting order thanks mainly to the way the game is being run by your friends at Red Hall. I know you don't believe they've ever made mistakes and that they run the game so well. But you are the one in a minority NOT me. many genuine fans like me feel the game is being run into the ground and will return to a part time regional sport within in a few years unless the RFL gets its act together and starts running the game for the benefit of the clubs and their supporters not trying to victimise them. I look forward to your defence of the RFL. BTW the Bulls have been badly run but dont use that as a defence of the RFL. The RFL have questions to answer too bradfordbronco
  • Score: 2

9:53pm Wed 28 May 14

bradfordbronco says...

TVOR where is your defence of the RFL? Think you make a better prosecutor than a defence barrister.. Its certainly an easier occupation
TVOR where is your defence of the RFL? Think you make a better prosecutor than a defence barrister.. Its certainly an easier occupation bradfordbronco
  • Score: 0

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