Cats sitting pretty

Despite strong play from Romsey, they couldn't take the match away from the Cats on their home ground. Photo: Jasper Carn

Despite strong play from Romsey, they couldn't take the match away from the Cats on their home ground. Photo: Jasper Carn

Flag favourites Macedon led throughout and shook off a determined Romsey lineup with a flurry of late goals to win by 44 points on Saturday.

"It was good that they (Romsey) brought pressure, and we were able to respond," Cats' coach Jeff Andrews said after the match of the round encounter at Tony Clarke Reserve.

Andrews was realistic in stating that Macedon face a number of big challenges in future games (including meeting reigning premiers Diggers Rest twice before the finals).

Romsey, despite this defeat, have still done enough in the first seven rounds to convince supporters they will be there at finals time. Wins over Diggers Rest and Rupertswood in low scoring contests have been vital for the Redbacks.

In fact, with nine home and away rounds remaining, the final six appears settled, although the exact positions may well change. Romsey faces a real test at home to Riddell on June 17, with the outcome virtually double points as the Bombers still hold hopes of sneaking into the finals.

Back to Macedon on Saturday, where conditions were ideal for good football. Turnovers cost the Redbacks dearly in the first half, and only a spate of inaccuracy from the Cats prevented a first half blow-out.

Losing two key players in Chris Kilmartin (slight concussion) and Daniel Markworth (hamstring twinge) earlier in the match made little difference to the Cats, such is their versatility. Tom Waters was forced to ruck for almost the entire match.

"Too big, too strong, too fast" was how one astute Romsey judge summed up the first half which produced a 7.12 to 3.2 scoreline.

Tension boiled over with a melee involving a large number after the half time siren, but wiser heads prevailed.The third quarter was even in general play, and both sides produced bursts of good football.

Romsey coach Corey O'Sullivan appealed to his side to "win the last term" and three quick goals in succession with plenty of run were impressive, forcing Macedon to take defensive measures.

It was the talented Aaron Christensen who produced two superb goals, reminiscent of a ballet dancer evading the opposition, plus another from key forward Matt Knox which snuffed out any hope of an upset.

Romsey finished up kicking eight goals, from eight different players, not enough to stop the Cats on their home ground.

Speedy Jack O'Sullivan enhanced his reputation as one of the best young players in the competition, and the Redbacks will have learned much from this outing.

Macedon looks a well oiled machine when players running on the outside are given the ball, and if their ball delivery is 'on', it's a case of look out.

With no matches this Queen's Birthday holiday weekend, the undefeated ladder leaders will have a night off from training on Thursday. The eighth round of Riddell League matches takes place on Saturday, June 17.

Hawks run riot

Woodend-Hesket, battling all season, gained some confidence by going on a scoring spree at Broadford.

The improving Hawks finished with a 172-point margin, 33.16 to 6.2, with the forwards enjoying the best ball supply of the season.

Rupertswood bounced back from the previous round loss at Romsey to edge out Sunbury Kangaroos 18.11 to 15.7 in the closest match of the round.

At home, Diggers Rest had 13 goalkickers in a 25.18 to 5.3 performance against Lancefield. The Tigers only managed one goal in the first half.

Wallan, with an eye on a finals spot, downed Melton Centrals 16.13 to 7.4, with Magpies' coach David Nolan contributing seven goals.

Riddell, as anticipated, was too strong for Rockbank with a 15.17 to 7.14 scoreline.

Reserves: Romsey 16.8 d Macedon 6.5, Woodend-Hesket 6.11 d Broadford 7.4, Diggers Rest 28.18 d Lancefield 0.3, Wallan 14.16 d Melton Centrals 2.3, Rupertswood 12.11 d Sunbury Kangaroos 5.8, Riddell 14.12 d Rockbank 7.10.

Under 18.5: Woodend-Hesket 9.10 d Diggers Rest 6.10, Macedon 14.8 d Romsey 2.3, Rupertswood 24.17 d Sunbury Kangaroos 2.1.