Some resolute defence from Brothers has carried them to their first win over Gundagai in eight years.
The Tigers had plenty chances to crack the Wagga side’s line, especially with three repeat sets in the last five minutes, but struggled to make many inroads.
Coach Terry Westblade labelled the 16-10 win the best he’s experience with the club.
“Defence was fabulous and that was the most pleasing thing from my perspective,” Westblade said.
“I thought it was our best defensive effort since I’ve been with them.”
Brothers held last year’s grand finalists scoreless in the second half to make it four wins from their first five games.
It’s the club best start in a decade, equalling the feat of Craig Field’s 2008 side that made it all the way to the grand final.
Westblade thought the team had been winning ugly, but was thrilled by how they stood up at Equex Centre on Sunday.
“The thing I was really pleased about was we got through our sets better and got a kick at the end of our sets,” he said.
“We haven’t been doing that all that well so we had to rely on that today to make ground against them as they are such a good side.
“That worked and they worked it well.”
Peter Little got Brothers off to the best start when he crossed after 15 minutes however Gundagai responded with two fortuitous tries to take a 10-4 lead into the break.
Cameron Breust struck two 40-20 kicks in the first half and while neither were converted on the scoreboard it kept turning the Tigers around and putting them under pressure.
Hay, who was outstanding after backing up from Riverina duties, then charged over 10 minutes into the second half to level things.
Six minutes later Cade Price put Brothers back in front when he scored from a kick.
Both teams had more opportunities to score and it looked as though Little was going again before Tyron Gorman plucked an intercept on his line.
While the Wagga side recovered, the play gave Gundagai good field position for the last five minutes but Brothers were able to sustain the pressure to score only their second win over the Tigers in the past decade.
Gundagai captain-coach James Smart was disappointed by his team’s performance.
“We were a bit all over the place,” Smart said.
“It has been a tough start and we’re not able to get into any type of rhythm.
“I don’t think we’ve put the same team on the park from one week to the next, let alone got the guys to training, so it is tough to get into any type of rhythm.”
The Tigers are now midfield after two wins and three losses to start the season.
They’ve lost to three teams in the top four, Southcity, Cootamundra and Brothers, and Smart is looking for an improved performance against third placed Junee.
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