North Wagga have one hand on the minor premiership after a convincing 38-point win at Temora, and one eye on the week off it brings after backman Matt Thomas hobbled off with a hamstring injury on Saturday.
Thomas made his way to the bench in the final quarter at Nixon Park, where he could compare notes with teammate Corey Watt, who missed the game after tearing his in their previous game at Coleambally.
Saints' 11.6 (72) to 5.4 (34) win keeps them in top spot, clear of Marrar on percentage but needing to beat the Northern Jets next week to be certain to stay there.
"Our goal's been to win the minor premiership, for the last two or three weeks we've talked about it. Obviously we've got the Jets next week though who are a good quality team," Hamblin said.
"I'm stoked with how the boys are travelling. The football we're playing is not that pretty but we're getting the job done and we're really looking forward to next week."
It may not all have been pretty but the third quarter must've been a delight for Hamblin to behold as the Saints shook off the shackles of a tight first half, getting right on top in the midfield and finally cashing in.
They kicked six goals to none as the forward line was opened up for Josh Campbell, with Josh Thompson sent down as his offsider, and it paid dividends. Campbell was a target but Thompson seized the rewards, with two clever goals and a third after a great pack mark.
"I challenged the boys and they really responded in the third quarter so I'm super proud," Hamblin said.
"I thought in the second quarter our forward line intensity was down. We made the move to send Josh Thompson down forward and he created a spark, laid three or four tackles, and ended up getting three goals in that third quarter which lifted us."
North Wagga went from being all square at halftime, 3.3 (21) apiece, to 38 points up and well and truly on track for victory.
Midfielder Tom Bennetts had been a big presence in the first half, including kicking the only two goals of the first quarter, as well as dropping back to help defuse trouble. But Kane Flack's class set up one of those goals and he only got more involved from there, to help the Saints midfield take control.
The Kangaroos' backline held up well in the first half, and two goals to Sam Jensen brought them right back into it. They almost went to half-time in front but for Jason Reid's shot at his second goal just fading.
But the third quarter was one-way traffic out of the middle and, while Temora kicked back-to-back goals in the last they couldn't get back within four goals before the Saints finished it off.
Flack and Bennetts were outstanding, Thompson had a big say in the game and full-back Brayden Skeers kept Matt Harpley goalless, but they had no shortage of strong performers.
For Temora, Jensen in the midfield and Reinhold across half-back led the way, along with key defender Max Richardson.
But they'll be hoping to see Jacob Turner return from a tight hamstring for next week's play-off for third place against East Wagga-Kooringal.
The winner at Gumly will get a second chance in finals, the loser will be into a do-or-die final against Charles Sturt University or Coleambally.