Rumbalara has shaken its Hardinge St Oval hoodoo with a strong win over Deniliquin Rams in Murray Football League.GEORGINA CAHILL August 4, 2014 3:10am
Prior to Saturday’s clash Rumbalara had only been victorious once in five years at Deniliquin Rams’ fortress Hardinge St Oval.
Damian Cupido’s side was desperate to break the drought and it certainly did.
Rumba overturned a one-point deficit at three-quarter time to claim a 23-point victory in the round-16 Murray Football League clash.
The stakes were incredibly high for the Rams, who remain agonisingly close to playing finals footy.
Rumba comfortably sits second on the ladder, while the Rams sit in seventh spot, right behind Nathalia on percentage.
Rumba got an early jump on the Rams and led by 11 points at quarter-time.
The Rams outscored Rumba in the second quarter, but couldn’t wrestle the lead off the visitors, who held a three-point lead at the main break.
Nathan Battle’s injury woes continued on Saturday.
Battle broke his ribs early in the clash, with under-17 player Lindsay Bryant subbed on for Rumba.
Inaccuracy was incredibly costly for the Rams in the third quarter, when they outscored Rumba 4.5 to 4.1 to hold a one-point lead at three-quarter time.
Rumba piled on five fourth quarter goals, including three from youngster Bryant, to the Rams’ two, to claim the 23-point win.
Cupido said it was an incredibly tough, physical battle on the Rams’ huge home ground.
‘‘I’ve never played on a ground so big before,’’ Cupido said with a laugh.
‘‘The length of the ground and the width of the ground was (The Rams) worst enemy in the end.’’
While Cupido said every player put in a gutsy performance, his midfielders were crucial contributors to the win.
‘‘It was a credit to our midfield that stepped up,’’ he said.
‘‘I thought Ash Miller, Rex Taylor and Dylan Kerr were huge for us in the middle of the ground.’’
Former Essendon player Nathan Lovett-Murray was also named in Rumba’s best.
‘‘Nathan’s great to have. He just wins those crucial contests that need to be won,’’ Cupido said.
Anthony Bull, Ricky Gittens, Lachlan Macdonald and Ollie Draffin were best for the Rams.
Josh Perizzolo and Brett Macdonald were the side’s multiple goal-scorers with two each.
Jim Hockey’s hands are just as quick on the strings as they were when he was younger.
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