FORBES Platypi captain-coach Heamani Lavaka has predicted Dubbo Kangaroos can create some problems for their higher-rated Blowes Clothing Cup rivals after watching the defenders rack up an 80-0 scoreline against his side at No.1 Oval on Saturday.
While the visitors were short on personnel, the Roos were clinical through the early stages of the match before ultimately piling on 12 tries as they moved into fourth place on the ladder.
Lavaka could only watch on after leaving the field with an ankle injury, forcing the scrums to become uncontested and leaving the Roos to take part in little more than an opposed training session.
But he saw enough to suggest the 2015 competition isn't a race between the two Orange clubs.
"I think Orange Emus are the best team in the competition but Dubbo are coming good at the right time," Lavaka said.
"We have a very young side and today wasn't the best team we could put on the field, but to Dubbo's credit they came out and played hard. If they can stay in the top five and make finals I don't think any team would want to play them.
"I'm just proud of the boys that came today and played. We got beaten easily but we came as a team and tried our best and in a year or two if we can stick together we'll be a much better team."
Four tries in the opening 15 minutes on Saturday had the win and bonus point secured early, and it was the Roos' lethal backline combination of Country centre Filisione Pauta Hena Tuatea and Moa Kavaefiafi that were doing the bulk of the damage.
Pauta scored four tries, Tuatea two and Kavaefiafi one, with their efforts backed up by a hat-trick for hard-working forward Eli Kinscher and a brace to youngster Jacob Phillips.
"I thought we came out well and were able to effectively assert ourselves on the match early," Roos coach Scott Vaughan said.
"When 'Hair' went off and the scrums became uncontested it turned into a bit of a training run but in saying that we held it together pretty well.
"There were patches where we probably switched off or just went through the motions a bit, but the thing that pleased me the most was that we didn't allow a try.
"Sometimes when you're a long way in front and the sting goes out of a game you can get slack, particularly in defence, but the boys didn't do that so I was pleased."
Dubbo now faces a two-week mini-finals campaign, with matches against fifth-placed Cowra and sixth-placed Mudgee to determine the last two spots in this year's finals.
"We need to play two good weeks of rugby to make it, and if we can do that and stay in fourth it will give us a home semi which would be terrific," Vaughan said.
"We're playing some good rugby and these next two games will be a good test as we hopefully head into the semis."
DUBBO KANGAROOS 80 (Filisione Pauta 4, Eli Kinscher 3, Jacob Phillips 2, Hena Tuatea 2, Moa Kavaefiafi tries; James Mata 6, Tuatea 4 convs) def FORBES PLATYPI 0