Redbacks side lets tough game slip

ON current form and depth of quality players, this weekend's game was listed as a given for South Toowoomba.

Redbacks coach Peter Millard, and the badly depleted and inexperienced team that went to University to play one of the big guns of the 09 season, just refused to see it that way.

The Bombers came out on top with a 10-point margin, defeating the Redbacks 12:3:[75] to 9:11:[65].

The game was won and lost in the first quarter when Souths pushed out to a comfortable 21-point lead at the first break and were playing much better and smarter football than Warwick. They probably should have been further in front.

Millard rallied his players at the short break, pointed out where they were going wrong and made some smart match up changes.

From that point on Warwick was the best team on the paddock, but could not get any closer than the final result.

The Reddies had a majority of the play, kept the ball running at all costs and proved they will be a burr under the saddle of any team come September.

Matthew Sinkins had an outstanding game and the go-to trio of Brendan Iles, Andrew Bardsley and Kurt Millard were hard at the ball all day.

The return to form of Nick Donges, playing in his natural position at full forward created a target with Tiger Andrews playing decoy and the running defence of Daniel Talbot, Bryce Bodsworth, Tony Chandler and Steve Martin was superb.

It was obvious Souths were missing Ben Langham and James Kratzmann, but the depth in reserve at the club is certainly a talented group and they are a team ready to defend the title.

The Redbacks lost three selected players on the morning of the game.

Veteran and utility Jason Wright had a family emergency and became unavailable, David Butcher's recurring shoulder injury made him a last minute casualty and Ian Rowlings lost his battle with the dreaded lurgy.

The Redbacks had already lost Andrew Politch, Greg Woodward, Julius Sakrewski, Josh Andrews and Dave Walker, Matt Authurs and Kerin Politch.

Congratulations to Dale Windschutel in his first ever game of Aussie Rules and Corey McGee for coming out of retirement.

- Colin Pope

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