Tatura was forced to play the second half of its 98-point loss to Kyabram with 17 men on the field after a string of injuries crippled its playing stocks.
Among them was a serious head knock to Jaydan Thewma, suffered from an Axel Childs elbow that had him yellow-carded and reported in the second quarter.
Thewma joined captain Tom Miller, who strained his groin in the first quarter, on the sidelines, with Jonah Vraca (concussion) and Liam Borrelli (irregular heartbeat) also out of action.
It made the difficult task of playing the competition’s best side nearly impossible — and the ruthless Bombers capitalised with 11 goals to three in the second half.
Before that, though, Kyabram had already wrestled the ascendancy its way, with a 25-point quarter-time advantage.
Bulldogs coach Jamason Daniels said it had been an unfortunate day at the office against the side that just keeps on delivering.
‘‘It was a tough day and not ideal circumstances coming up against a side as good as Kyabram,’’ he said.
‘‘To their credit they are a great, elite team and it makes it hard to play your own style.
‘‘Given the circumstances though, I was really proud of how we went about it, especially the second half.
‘‘I said at half-time, playing a half with no rotations and a man down, all I wanted to see was our character. The next month will be a test of that character as well and I was proud of what the boys did.’’
Kyabram’s 51st consecutive win was once again led on the scoring front by Kayne Pettifer with five goals, while Brad Mangan and Liam Ogden kicked three each.
Midfield magician Mick Mattingly continued a purple patch with another strong display, also hitting the scoreboard with a pair of goals.
For the Bulldogs, Sean Martin impressed as the side’s best player, with Daniels, Mitch Elliott and Billy Cooper other keys.
With another difficult encounter with Euroa on the menu on Saturday, the Bulldogs’ backs are against the wall.
‘‘It doesn’t get any easier for us, we keep getting injuries but that’s football,’’ he said.
‘‘We’ve lost Tom Miller, who has been our best player this season, and we’ll see about the other boys, but it will be a test of our depth.’’