Deniliquin has climbed to third on Southern Inland Rugby Union’s second grade ladder after beating Tumut 24-12 on Saturday.
Played at the Bulls’ home ground in Tumut, it was Deni’s fourth win in a row after knocking off ladder-leader Ag College last weekend.
Drovers coach Warwick Strong said his side lacked intensity but still ‘‘did enough to win’’.
‘‘If you want to be around at the end of the year these are the sort of games you have to win,’’ Strong said.
‘‘We started a bit slow because of the four-hour trip and considering we had a few players out we still played pretty well.
‘‘We never really looked like losing to be honest.’’
The Drovers scored first through Bernard Schoeman, with youngster Todd Thocolich on target with the conversion.
Tumut hit back right on half-time to have the score at 10-7 in Deni’s favour.
Stu Kent and Mason Brown both scored second-half tries for the visitors, with Thocolich finishing up with three conversions and one penalty.
But the Bulls denied Deni consecutive tries, always scoring straight after, which prevented the lead from ever blowing up.
Strong said the Drovers were forced to play the final 10 minutes of the match with only 14 players on the field, after Zac Tamati was sin-binned.
‘‘It was only through an infringement, nothing too serious,’’ the coach said.
‘‘But we defended really well when we were one player down.’’
Storm Tamati was awarded the three votes as Deni’s best player and also took home the Player’s Player award. Kent scored two votes, while Scott Ison and Zac Tamati shared one each.
The Dingo Award went to Ison’s girlfriend, Angie Donald.
This Saturday, the Drovers play their third away game in a row when they travel to Cootamundra.
It will be another chance for the locals to consolidate a spot in the top four, with the Tri-Colours having only won one game.
Report courtesy of Shaun Connor (pt)