By HARRY CLARKE

WERE it not for a painstaking two-point loss in the opening round, Roma Cities’ top footy side would now be only one win away from an undefeated regular season.

Such is the dominance displayed throughout 2021 by the men in blue, who walloped a near full strength Chinchilla Bulldogs side desperate for redemption at Saturday, playing in front of their home crowd for the final time this year.

The final score was 44-18 to Cities, whose coach said the young and fit side had this year shown the commitment to training and travel that invariably distinguishes the top teams in the Roma rugby league competition.

It was clear from the sidelines that Cities are a well oiled machine. The have an attacking mentality. They put themselves in to a scoring position from anywhere on the park and know how to strike when the time is right.

IMAGE: Linda Steinohrt

Coach Fred Cherry wasn’t even prepared to single out strong individual performers from the blistering 17-man effort.

“We went out with a plan to try and dominate the game early. We took the foot of the throat a little bit but we got back on the horse and stuck to the game,” Cheery said.

“The young fellas are dedicated and enthusiastic. They turn up to training and that’s half the battle. If you can get full numbers to training that’s a big thing.

“They all play well. Across the park they all do their job. They do it for their mates. They’re a very close group of young fellas and I’m proud to be associated with them. I watched them come through as young fellas and thought ‘I wouldn’t mind getting involved.'”

Roma Cities A-grade coach Fred Cherry

Before facing the Miles Devils at home for the last round of the season, Cherry said his team would need to maintain the discipline its displayed all season in order to come away with the premiership.

“I just tell the boys to play each game as we see it. They don’t get carried away. They’re old heads on young shoulders,” he said.

“We’ve got to dig a bit extra. Do those little on percenters properly and just get our defence right on song.”

Chinchilla winger Romada Barnes looks for space against Roma. IMAGE: Lachlan Steinohrt

Chinchilla’s last fixture for the season will be the notoriously tough assignment of playing St George at Rowden Park, in a game that will determine who secures the fourth spot for the finals.

Chinchilla will need to win to keep their season alive.

“It will be a tough ask. We’ve got a few fellas out with injuries,” Bulldogs captain Hayden Bender said.

“We’ve got to start better and be more consistent throughout the whole game. We need a bit better communication in our attack.

“We were a bit disjoined there, at some stages.”

“But it was good to see the locals coming out to support for our last home game.

“We’re gonna give it a red hot crack in St George this weekend.”

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