BARRABA’S Joey Latham was named best on field after he cut the Quirindi defence apart in Saturday’s Wests Shield Group 4 Second Division grand final.
The star five-eighth’s running game was on song as he waltzed through the Grasshopper defence on several occasions in the first half to go on 50m runs.
Latham had the visitors guessing all day as his distribution skills had tBarraba’s fringe players on the scoreboard early, having a hand in most of the Bulldogs’ seven tries.
The man of the match sent both Whites (Geoff and Luke) over for early tries and steered the Bulldog forwards around the paddock with ease.
“It makes it easy when the big fellas are going forward up the middle,” Latham said.
“Using those big blokes and then hitting the edges was the plan and it worked well.”
“It was a full team effort.”
The former Bingara Bullets star and Group 19 Presidents Cup player of the year puts the Bulldogs’ great season down to having a solid playing group who are all good mates and committed to the team.
“We knew it was going to be a tough game but we also knew we had the team to do it.”
The playmaker said the side learnt a lot from playing Quirindi in the major semi two weeks before the final when the Hoppers surprised the minor premiers early and led into the second half.
“The team took a lot from that game,” Latham said.
“We had a good look at our line defence as well as their defence and I think that was the difference today.”
Bulldogs captain coach Tim Coombes was in no doubt that Latham deserved the accolades after the game.
“Joey Latham’s skill level is just that bit above everybody else,” Coombes said.
“He showed that out there today. He had a blinder.”
Latham thought that Coombes and Tim Mallise were the best on field.
“We all wanted to do it this year,” Latham said.
“We wanted to win for our mates and we just went out there and did it.”