Echidnas go down to defending premiers
RUGBY UNION: Defending premiers, the Dalby Wheatmen, made the three-hour journey west along the Warrego to take on the Roma Echidnas at Gallas Fox Park on Saturday.
The Wheatmen A Grade team proved too strong for the Echidnas, and defeated the home side 55-12.
The Echidnas also went down 12-27 to the Wheatmen in the C Grade game.
The Wheatmen dominated at scrum time from early on, with captain Sam Hogarth earning their first try off the strong pack.
Hogarth scored a second try in the first half, alongside Hugh Brosnan and Matt Donovan.
Daniel Merkker converted three of the four tries to give the Wheatmen a 26-0 lead at the half time whistle.
The Echidnas might have given away a few early tries, however the team started to gel in defence and attack in the second half.
A lovely chip and chase by Nick Allen earned the Echidnas their first points on the board.
Eddie Cross converted the try with a heart-thumping bounce off the post.
From there it was a game of push and pull with the Echidnas showing heart worthy of the defending premiers.
Benny Rawazi intercepted a Wheatmen pass and dashed 70 metres to score a try that earned him a standing ovation from Roma supporters.
He must have run out of luck on his way however, as he couldn't convert his own try.
While the effort was there, the final product proved too elusive.
The Wheatmen piled on five more tries from Hogarth, Merkker, Julian Freby, PJ McVeigh and Paul Maguire for a final score of 55-12.
However, there were plenty of positives to take from all aspects of the game.
From the likes of the forwards in the engine room to the speedsters in the backline causing all sorts of disruption around the paddock, the mix of experienced and young heads came together to put on a creditable performance.
After a difficult start to the season, there is plenty to look forward to in 2018.
Check out the photos from the game below: