Sydney have won the 2015 ARU Women’s National XVs Championship on Friday 23-3 after a tough battle with rivals, ACT.
Sydney scored four unanswered tries in the final which capped off an undefeated tournament for the side.
The Wallaroos selection panel will now to look to name an extended Wallaroos training squad in the coming days for a High Performance training camp at Bond University Gold Coast in August.
ARU General Manager Pathways and Performance Ben Whitaker:
“On behalf of the ARU I would like to congratulate all teams involved in the Nationals and extend my particular congratulations to the successful Sydney side.
“Throughout the tournament we saw an incredibly high standard of play from all teams and that is a credit to the work ethic, talent and preparation of the various teams and players.
“The challenge now lies with the Wallaroos selection panel to pick the 40 person squad for the Wallaroos training camp in August as we build towards the Women’s Rugby World Cup 2017.”
Sydney v ACT
The Championship final between the ACT and Sydney started with Sydney dominating possession. A well organised ACT defence though prevented Sydney from making any damaging territorial gains as the match was fought in the middle of the field.
As both sides traded penalty attempts it was eventually Sydney who scored the first points through the boot of Katrina Barker to take the score to 3-0. The first half continued to be a battle of the forwards as both packs through everything they had at each other and kept the ball in hand.
A slow and consistent march by Sydney into the ACT’s defensive zone eventually allowed the Sydney backs to combine well with quick passes to give Tayma Terita the opportunity to score in the corner, taking the score to 8-0.
With seconds remaining in the first half Sarah Carter converted a penalty from right in front for the ACT to take the score to 8-3.
The second half saw Sydney shoot out of the blocks with tries to Emma Lincoln-Smith and Ariana Kaiwao taking the score to 18-3.
Sydney 23 (Tayma Terita, Emma Lincoln-Smith, Ariana Kaiwao, Hannah Sio tries; Katrina Barker cons; Katrina Barker pens) defeated ACT 3 (tries;cons; Sarah Carter pens)
South Australia v ASRU
In the battle to avoid the wooden spoon South Australia started well, placing early pressure on the ASRU side. A blistering run from South Australia’s outside backs made early territorial gains. A penalty at the breakdown by ASRU allowed South Australia’s fullback Lotti Bovoro to give the southern state a 3-0 lead. South Australia extended this advantage to 8-0 after a try from Frances Afeaki where the score would remain at half time.
The second half began as a stalemate as both sides continued to apply pressure at the breakdown. A committed ASRU outfit were finally rewarded for their toil with a try to Laura Fletcher. The winger paced around the defence to score in the corner to take the score 8-5 in favour of South Australia.
South Australian countered moments later with a try to Eva Kapani to take the score to 10-5.
In a gripping final moments ASRU scored their second try of the match Brodie Stweart. It wasn’t enough for the Defence Force side as South Australia won the match 13-3.
South Australia (tries Frances Afeaki, Eva Karpani;pens Lotti Bovoro) 13 defeated ASRU (Laura Fletcher, Brodie Stewart, tries;cons;pens) 10
Victoria v NSW Country
Victoria started the Plate Final well using their powerful pack to march NSW Country backwards in defence. Two tries from Victorian fullback Sam Treherne gave Victoria an early advantage of 10-0 where the score remained at half time.
The second half saw NSW Country emerge a different unit as they increased their focus on contesting the breakdown and being more mobile across the park. This paid dividends with a great run from Tahlia Goldsmith who sliced through the Victorian defence out wide to burn the defence and score underneath the posts. The successful conversion by Melanie Howard brought the score to 10-7 in favour of Victoria. A valiant comeback from NSW Country was not enough and a resolute Victorian defence was able to hold on for victory and win the Plate Final.
Victoria (tries Sam Treherne 2; cons;pens) 10 defeated NSW Country (Tahlia Goldsmith tries; Melanie Howard cons;pens) 7
Western Australia v Queensland
A dominant Queensland outfit worked hard across the park to ensure that they finish the Championship on a high. Western Australia was unable to gain any consistent possession and were caught off guard by Queensland’s pace to the breakdown.
Despite a try to Western Australia through Vesinia Taufa, it was all one way traffic for Queensland as the women in red ran in four tries to win the match 32-7.
Queensland’s efforts ensured they finished the tournament in third place.
Western Australia (tries Vesinia Taufa;cons Hayley Barclay;pens) QLD (tries Asako Ono, Amelia Kuk, Kirby Sefo, Evelyn Horomia;cons Ayden Bain3;pens Ayden Bain 2)