Forbes' women's rugby side only formed last year, so meeting Orange Emus in the opening round of a delayed competition was a tough gig.
But coach Brendan Hayes couldn't be prouder of the way the side threw themselves into a very short pre-season training window, or their efforts on Saturday.
The long-time Forbes Rugby Union Club player and coach was thrilled to see the local ovals host a full day of rugby union, from the juniors right through four senior grades.
"It's great to see football played again," Hayes said, thanking Forbes Shire Council for presenting both South Circle and Grinsted Ovals in excellent condition.
He was also full of praise for the women's side, most of whom came on board for the club's debut into the women's competition last year.
"Three or four have gone, three or four have come on board," Hayes said.
"They just continue to impress me with their commitment to training and to the game.
"They're on an exponential learning curve so when you look at the likes of playing Orange Emus, who were grand finalists last year, to be beaten by just one try really shows their improvement and so much of the credit is due to them."
The side's willingness to put 100 per cent into their defence showed, even in the 29-40 scoreline.
"(Emus) have some pretty talented footballers," Hayes said.
"We are certainly playing well above our weight."
And when the women in blue did get on the offensive, they were impressive.
"What little ball we did have we used well," Hayes said.
"It was certainly an arm-wrestle, but at three quarter time it was pretty even."
This year the women's competition will be played in conjunction with the men's throughout their shortened Blowes Clothing Cup campaign so fans will get to see all grades in action each week.
After the competitions took the different grades to different towns in 2019, it's a welcome development in this very different rugby season.
"They have added a whole new dimension to the club," Hayes said of the women's side.
"They have got the utmost respect from first grade right through."
He welcomes any more girls who are interested in the game to head on over to Forbes Rugby Club on Tuesday or Thursday evenings for a training run.
Forbes travels to Bathurst in two weeks for Round 3 of the shortened Westfund Ferguson Cup and Blowes Clothing Cup.