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RDFL: Diggers Rest beaten into grand final by Romsey

Bowled over: Romsey’s Ash McNaughton jumps into Diggers Rest’s Steve Fogarty. Picture: Shawn Smits 15-09-2012- 26139 – Macedon RDFL Preliminary final Romsey v Diggers Rest. Romseys Matt Davidson tackles Diggers Rests Kris Marsh. Picture ShawnSmits/The Weekly
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15-09-2012- 26139 – Macedon RDFL Preliminary final Romsey v Diggers Rest. Romseys Ash McNaughton crashes into Diggers Rests Steve Fogarty. Picture ShawnSmits/The Weekly

15-09-2012- 26139 – Macedon RDFL Preliminary final Romsey v Diggers Rest. Romseys Matt Davidson tackles Diggers Rests Kris Marsh. Picture ShawnSmits/The Weekly

ROMSEY has won its way through to a grand final rematch against Sunbury Kangaroos after kicking away from Diggers Rest to win by 34 points on Saturday.

The Redbacks exploited space to run and move the ball quickly at Macedon’s Tony Clarke Reserve and eliminate the Burras 11.16 (82) to 7.6 (48).

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The victory sets up a tantalising rematch of last year’s grand final, which Romsey won by two points.

The Redbacks got a fast start on Saturday to lead by 19 points at quarter-time before Diggers Rest consolidated to peg the margin back to 11 by the long break.

But Romsey kicked out to a 30-point lead at the last change. Only inaccurate kicking for goal prevented the margin being greater.

Matt Davidson booted five goals for the Redbacks, while Mitch Farmer booted four — as well as more than half a dozen behinds. In contrast, Diggers Rest didn’t have a multiple goal-kicker as target forward Brent Tuckey was engaged in a tough battle with Romsey defender Leigh Erwin.

“They were a bit predictable going to Tuckey,” Romsey coach Mark Pederson said. “Getting Erwin back from injury was something we really needed. He was the perfect match-up and did a fantastic job.”

Pederson said his team’s back six had combined well to keep Diggers Rest’s other dangerous forward, Jack Sheahan, quiet.

A midfield battle of the league’s two most recent Bowen medallists — Romsey’s Shannon Green manning Diggers’ Cameron Woods — was also decisive.

“We were let down by our kicking again,” Pederson said. “We probably kept them in the game longer.

“We knew Diggers Rest are a talented side and wouldn’t throw it in.” Pederson said that even though it was a grand final rematch, the turnover of the squad and a different playing style would mean a different-looking Romsey team running out on Sunday.

Of particular importance will be the conditions at Lancefield Park, with Romsey favouring a running style.

“Our [departed players] were big bodies; they’ve been replaced by running types,” Pederson said.

“We know what our weaknesses were last time against Sunbury and having Cam Dawson and Leigh Erwin back will help our structure.

“I feel [Sunbury] are going to be under more pressure than us.

“They know a lot about us having watched us at the weekend, but we also know a lot about them.”