Sydney goes back-to-back

Leesa Hamilton
by Leesa Hamilton

Sydney has won back-to-back Women's Nationals titles, finishing a dominant tournament with an emphatic 35-3 grand final win over ACT on Sunday.

The dual winners conceded just eight points through the three-day tournament, including just one try through the competition, to raise trophy once again and relegate their southern opponents to another runner-up finish.

Victoria Latu turned in an outstanding performance for Sydney, winning the player of the championship to cap off her team's win.

After a physical opening exchange, Sydney really took hold of the final ultimately running in five unanswered tries in the triumph.

Sydney captain Ash Hewson, who finished with 15 points in the final, said the bonds between her teammates proved their ultimate weapon in the competition.

“I’m so proud of our girls. The camaraderie in this team is unbelievable and I think that’s why we came away with the win, because we just lift for one another," she said.

"It’s happened every day this tournament, which led us to the final.

“ACT were very physical, especially in the first 10-15 minutes when they had us on the back foot and were playing with very good structure.

"We were frantic, but managed to compose ourselves, pull it together and come away with the win.”

NSW Country came fifth. Photo: ARU Media/Karen WatsonThe two sides went into the break with a tight margin, before Sydney put its foot on the accelerator with three unanswered tries sealing their title.

Queensland finished third in the competition, with a 16-7 win over Western Australia in the third place playoff, cementing their standing in the national pecking order.

Country NSW completed a successful day for the host state, beating the Australian Defence Force to finish fifth, while Victoria took out seventh place with a 27-5 win over South Australia.

Wallaroos head coach Paul Verrell, who will be selecting a national squad from this weekend's tournament, said Sydney's experience shone through in the final, though the ACT's effort was admirable.

“Sydney had some experienced players who clicked into gear and their reserves added to the team dynamic really well," he said.

"However ACT really put them under pressure, and the score didn’t reflect their passion and effort.”

“There will be a lot of Wallaroos selection headaches now.

"There’s some really great young rugby talent in this country.

"There’s a lot of passion and the skill level has jumped in recent years so it’s great for Australian women’s rugby.”

Buildcorp women's nationals finals results

Grand final

Sydney 35

(Tries: Hewson, Sio, Horomia, Davey, Sulusi Cons: Hewson 2 Pens: Hewson 2)


(Pens: Stanford 3)

Third place playoff

Queensland 16

(Tries: Temara, Sefo: Pens:Temara 2)

WA 7

(Tries: Edwards Cons: Fell)

Fifth place playoff

Country NSW 17

(Tries: Jamieson, Kava Palu Cons: Walker 2 Pens: Walker)


Seventh place playoff

Victoria 27

(Tries: Treherne 2, Masters, Nabalarua, Brickle, Cons: Masters con

SA 5

(Tries: Karpani)