PORT City Breakers would have been happy to hear the full-time siren sound at Verge Street Oval on Sunday.
The Breakers trailed 12-6 early before they clicked into gear on the way to a comprehensive 50-18 victory over Macleay Valley.
In an uninspiring, slow game of football the Breakers ran in 10-tries-to-three with Owen Blair, Andrew Fox and Luke Sinclair all crossing for doubles.
Adrian Daley, Jeremy Smith, Chris Piper and Jarrod Robbins also found the tryline.
Breakers coach Dan Kemp said the Mustangs “had a crack”, but the class of the two-time premiers ultimately shone through.
“They were undermanned and had a good crack, but it’s a game we’ll put in the rear view mirror pretty quickly,” he said.
“It was a very lacklustre day.”
The result could have been even more one-sided if not for some wayward goalkicking from Breakers hooker Jeremy Smith.
Smith managed to hit the post from in front as his own teammates heckled him from the halfway line.
It was that sort of game.
Kemp admitted it had been a hard week to prepare for with the uncertainty surrounding the Mustangs in the lead-up to the match.
They were undermanned and had a good crack, but it’s a game we’ll put in the rear view mirror pretty quickly.Breakers coach Dan Kemp
Their reserve grade side had to forfeit and full-time was called early last weekend in Macleay Valley’s first grade encounter with Wingham.
The Tigers led 64-0 at the time.
“It’s difficult to prepare when you don’t know whether you’ll have a game,” Kemp said.
“But they turned up and good luck to them.”
Mustangs president Tim Moorehead remained upbeat and felt the scoreline didn’t reflect how close the game was.
“It was a tough one and the Mustangs tested them early on,” he said.
Macleay Valley opened the scoring before both sides exchanged tries and then the Breakers finished the half strong.
They crossed for three quick tries to take a 22-12 lead to the sheds.
Macleay Valley hit back to start the second half and reduced the deficit to 22-18.
They continued to apply the pressure to the Breakers’ defence but after three repeat sets they came up empty handed. Port City capitalised when given the same opportunity.
Moorehead said five-eighth Malcolm Webster was instrumental in leading the Mustangs.
It’s difficult to prepare when you don’t know whether you’ll have a game.Dan Kemp
“Mal was really good, his kicking game was brilliant and it led to a couple of the Mustangs’ tries,” he said.
“He was sending the ball wide early and it was testing the Breakers on the edge.”
In other matches, the Breakers registered a comfortable 36-6 victory in the Ladies League Tag encounter.
The Mustangs proved too good in the under-18 fixture and emerged with a 24-14 victory.
A decision will be made on whether the Mustangs continue to contest the reserve grade competition later this week.