Students close in on minor premiership

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Sydney University women’s rugby side extended their unbeaten run to 14 matches with a 24-14 win over Warringah at Pittwater Rugby Park on Saturday.

And with one round to be played before the finals, the win was enough for the Students to lay one hand on the 2014 minor premiership. Sydney University sit on 62 competition points ahead of Parramatta on 57.

The two clubs will meet at 11am at Granville Park this Saturday to decide the issue in the final round of the competition proper.

Sydney University had a solid lead-up last Saturday when they ground out a win at windy Rat Park. Running against the strong wind in the first half, Sydney University struggled to get out of their own quarter and relied on a solid defensive structure to keep the Rats to two tries before half-time.

Indeed, the only time they advanced the ball over halfway was from some great work in the backline which unleashed Kim Davey on a powerful run to the line.

Down at the break, University kept their composure and with the wind behind them began to reverse the Rats’ dominance.

In her last game for the Students this year before heading off to the Women’s World Cup in France, five-eighth Ash Hewson was typically electric. Her combination with the chase and tackling of Ianeta Baker on the wing produced valuable metres for University.

Hewson also threw in a kick-fake-step combo that parted the Rats defence like the Red Sea. Unfortunately she was forced from the field with a broken nose midway through the second half.

With a wealth of experience and encouragement in the team coming from Alex Hargreaves, Iliseva Batibasaga and Fary Hayati, and the enthusiasm of the coaching team, University’s crew of young guns have been going from strength to strength leading into the finals.

This week it was utility Sera Naiqama who showed composure, speed and agility in a darting run that turned a defensive position into offence. With the wind behind them and the ball in hand in the second half University composed themselves to grind out the victory.

All roads lead to Granville Park this Saturday.