'Cobra' steals show in Aussie quarter-final win

Womens - Sydney
Beth Newman Profile
by Beth Newman

Australia are one step closer to a Cup final spot, after beating Spain 29-0 in their quarter-final on Saturday to book a semi against Russia.

It was a match that provided a highlight that even the players enjoyed, watching Emma Tonegato zig zag her way to the match sealer.

An Alicia Quirk kick landed in front of Tonegato, who zigzagged her way out of Spain's grasp to seal their spot in the final four, and teammate Vani Pelite said it was the type of manoeuvre that earned her the nickname 'Cobra'.

"I was on the bench, so I was watching from the sideline but it was awesome. Incredible footwork by Emma - we do call the Cobra, so to see that in action was really good," she said.

":She does school us out at training."

Emilee Cherry was influential against Spain. Photo: RUGBY.com.au/Stuart WalmsleySpain put pressure on the Aussies early, forcing the home side to look lateral for the first score, one that eventually came through Charlotte Caslick in the second minute.

Emilee Cherry out-manoeuvred Spain's defence in tight for Australia's second try, but it wasn't all easy for the Aussies. 

Cherry was managed through the first day of the tournament, only playing in the final game of day one, and the Olympian was rested late against Spain as well, in a bid to keep her fresh for a title tilt.

It was a long-range pass from Cherry that put Caslick through for her second, with the halfback putting on the afterburners to burst through a gap and stretch the margin to 17 points.

Spain threatened as the half ticked down, putting the heat on Australia's defence, but the hosts held strong in the opening stanza.

Australia had all the momentum after the break and co-captain Sharni Williams slipped out of a Spanish tackle to score Australia's third, with a semi-final spot all but theirs by that point.


The Aussies will play Russia in their semi-final at 1:37pm AEDT for a spot in Sunday's Cup final, and Pelite said either opponent would be a tricky one.

"Everyone on the circuit is very hard, so we've got to respect all of them," she said.

"No game lightly."

Keep up with all the day two action in our live blog.

RESULT

Australia 29

Tries: Caslick 2, Cherry, Williams, Tonegato

Cons: Sykes 2

Spain 0