BRADLEY Dack started 2018 with his 10th goal of the season but admitted Rovers’ draw at Rotherham was a ‘bitter pill to swallow’.

Dack’s goal midway through the second period looked to be enough to hand Rovers three points until David Ball equalised for the Millers in the last minute.

The point extended Rovers’ unbeaten run to 18 games in all competitions but they now trail second-placed Shrewsbury Town by five points ahead of their meeting on January 13.

It was a third draw in four for Rovers over the festive period and Dack said: “On a personal note it’s obviously nice to get 10 goals but really disappointing for the team to concede so late from a set piece, it feels like a defeat.

“There is disappointment, four games over Christmas we have drawn three and won one which isn’t great.

“All three drawn games we should have won and that’s the disappointment thing. It is a bitter pill to swallow.

“But it’s another game unbeaten and we take the point and go again against Shrewsbury in the league in a couple of weeks’ time.”

Dack confidently fired Rovers ahead, arrowing a shot across Rotherham goalkeeper Marek Rodak and into the far corner after racing on to a Richie Smallwood pass.

On his goal, the 24-year-old added: “I saw the keeper was set, so I thought I would lift it because he thought I was going to go low then luckily it went over him and into the top corner.”

All 10 of Dack’s goals have come in his previous 16 League One outings for Rovers as he became the first player at the club to move in to double figures this term.

After his summer move from Gillingham and overcoming two separate hamstring injuries at the start of the season, Dack feels he is fitter than ever and is looking to continue his form in front of goal.

“I’m probably the fittest I’ve ever been,” he said.

“To play two games in three days, a year ago my body probably wouldn’t have been able to cope.

“It’s nice to get through that and I’m feeling good and hopefully we can have a better second half of the season.”

Despite his goal, Dack’s influence on the game wasn’t helped by the rough treatment handed out by a number of the Milers players.

He added: “I think it was a really physical game, they’re strong defensively and I did get knocked about a bit.

“I don’t think the ref was great but that’s how it’s been lately.

“I don’t think I got one (free-kick) which was frustrating but it’s not something we really talk about.

“It’s tough when you’re trying your hardest and you feel like decisions are going against you.”

Rovers spent £750,000 to bring Dack, the League One player of the year in 2016, to Ewood Park and is now replicating that kind of form but says the players around him are helping to drive his standards up.

“I think it elevates your game,” Dack said.

“Every day in training you have to be at it to keep up with the likes of Danny (Graham), Dom (Samuel), Charlie (Mulgrew), Richie (Smallwood), there’s so many you can go through in that squad

“I’ve definitely raised my game since I’ve come here and long may it continue.”