It was a superb display of rugby when the Cobar Camels came up against the Warren Pumas in an election day extravaganza on Saturday.
Plenty of hard running rugby resulted in 12 tries recorded in the match with the Warren visitors finishing as 50-29 winners.
The scheduled kick off was delayed an hour due to an error of judgement when the Pumas left their guernseys at home.
Cobar had a spirited 10 minute opening stanza that had Warren back pedalling until a few errors crept into Cobar’s play which allowed the Pumas the opportunity to score to take a 7-0 lead.
Cobar’s backline ran hard with plenty of support by their forwards.
The Camels’ forwards marched the ball to the try line where Tom Wihongi scored to the raptures of the Cobar Rugby Old Boys.
With an unsuccessful conversion the score stood at 7-5 in the visitors’ favour after 20 minutes of play.
After a series of raids by both backlines with each team stifling the attacks, Warren found space out wide to score again and led 12-5 after missing the conversion.
Cobar Camels, showing great spirit, bounced back with Jamie Peters scoring a try which was converted by Travis Schintler to lock up the scores at 12-all.
Two late tries to Warren in the dying minutes of the half had them up 26-12 at halftime.
At the break there was plenty of positive talk by the Cobar team yet, after the break, they suffered a lack of possession and Warren capitalised to run in two converted tries to extend their winning margin to 28 points.
Cobar finally gained possession and, with first gamer Camel Tom McKenna distributing bullet passes to his backs from the breakdowns, the Camels started to turn the Pumas around.
With each chance the forwards got near the try line, resulting in three tries, with Wihongi and Peters crossing again along with a try to another Camel debutante, Justin Kelly.
With Schintler only converting one of the three tries, Cobar had however played themselves back in the game, and trailed 29-40.
A penalty goal to the Pumas gave them an additional three points and, after some promising attacking raids failed for the Camels, their fitness let them down as the Pumas scored a final try to run out 50-29 winners.
It was a superb display of rugby by a Camels team that had 20 players and, with a bench this week, it allowed those tiring to have a breather.
The backline of McKenna, Alex Allen, Sione Fakahua, Sitiveni Taumalolo and Ngamanu Winitana showed what hard running and creativity can do.
The Cobar forwards matched the Pumas all day with Camels’ loose head prop Todd Gauci going the full 80 minutes.
Best and Fairest three points went to Peters, two points to McKenna and one point each to Gauci, Sheldon Wilson and Wihongi.
Taumalolo was the Camels’ Players’ Player.
The Camels travel to Brewarrina this Saturday.—contributed.