Aussie women complete perfect Sydney 7s

Womens - Sydney
Beth Newman Profile
by Beth Newman

Australia has avenged a heartbreaking 2017, winning the Sydney 7s in the most emphatic way possible, beating New Zealand 31-0 in the cup final.

The Aussies made it through the tournament undefeated, scoring 213 unanswered points through six matches, the first team to achieve such a feat in a World Series tournament, and their first win over New Zealand since the 2016 Rio Olympics.

It was that statistic that elevated the victory from an outsider's perspective as muc

"I'm just stoked with the way that we performed," he said.

"Just the added on everyone is talking about is zero points, which was pretty pleasing and defence is all in the desire and attitude and certainly showed that.

"In our plan, this is one tournament we were targetting - we've got the Commonwwealth Games and for the team the World Cup as well.


"Being here in Sydney and seeing all the players' friends and families like they were in Rio is pretty amazing.

"To achieve what they have and then come back and continue on a pretty high plain was pretty satisfying."

Australia were deep in their attack but the Kiwis heaped pressure on them defensively, in what took just seconds to become a bruising encounter.

Shannon Parry gave Australia reward for their territory, completing a short chain of passes to give Australia the lead.

New Zealand took little time to tun the tables on the hosts, kicking their way deep into their attacking zone and forcing an error from Australia. 

Both sides made handling errors, with the fierce rivals unrelenting in their pressure, with that revealing itself on both sides of the ball.


A New Zealand lineout error gave Australia a chance to score, but they too made a mistake, gifting New Zealand the final possession of the half.

There was yet a final twist to come on the half, with Australia pouncing on a sloppy New Zealand pass, with player of the final, Charlotte Caslick ultimately streaking down the right edge.

Some Emilee Cherry brilliance gave Australia the first score after the break, with Cherry slipping out of the grasp of a New Zealand defender, handing off to Ellia Green to finish the job.

Evania Pelite swooped on a right-edge space for Australia's fourth, as they put breathing space between themselves and New Zealand.

When Emma Sykes dove over the line with 90 seconds left on the clock, the title was all but won.

New Zealand held possession after the final whistle, but even then the Aussies were more desperate than their Kiwi rivals, Emma Tonegato snuffing out their chances of a score.


Australia co-captain Shannon Parry said their defensive effort showed the growth in the team since this time last year.

"It's testament to the hard work that we've been putting in in our defensive strategies and very proud of the girls to finish the tournament with a donut," she said.

"It's a different vibe this year than it was last year and I think you could see that in our performance.

"We were very relaxed and we were calm in those crucial situations that we needed to be and that's probably last year where we lost it, (was) in those critical moments.

"So very pleased that the girls have taken that experience from last year and learned from that and we've obviously built and come away with the win today."

New Zealand captain Sarah Goss was devastated after the final. 

"We obviously came out here looking to take the win in Sydney and we fell short in the final," she said.

"I'm just feeling for the girls, they put a lot of effort over the Christmas break and unfortunately we got beaten by a good Australian side.

 

"Because they were able to hold on to the ball, they created good phases and then obviously were able to score off of that possession and we just couldn't hold on to the ball and every mistake we did, Australia pounced on and converted points from it."

Keep up with the live action here.

RESULT

Australia 31

Tries: Parry, Caslick, Green, Sykes

Cons: Sykes 2

New Zealand 0

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