NSW Country Rugby Union

Duff Top Corellas

Britney Duff from the Newcastle University Club has been named as the NSW Country Women’s Rugby Union Player of the Year for the 2017 season.

The award was announced and presented at the conclusion of the BuildCorp Women’s National Championships at Runaway Bay on the Gold Coast.

Duff has been a member of the Corellas for the last five years, having made her debut during the 2013 season, and is now considered as one of the senior players in the Corellas ranks.

The utility player who covers hooker, flanker and half-back had a solid season for the Corellas, in what was a young team, which featured a large number of players on debut.

Duff was a member of the Hunter Women’s Team which won the Country Championships, and also appeared in each of the Corellas seven representative matches during the season.

The Corellas had an extended program which included matches against Sydney, ACT and Victoria leading into the National Women’s Championships, which then saw the team take on Queensland, ACT, Victoria and Australian Combined Services.

Britney Duff polled votes from the judges in the majority of the representative matches, and was a deserved winner of the NSW Country Women’s Player of the Year Award.

Country Women’s Player of the Year Winners
• 2004 – Rebecca Trethowan (Flanker) – Hunter
• 2005 – Tobie McGann (Five-Eight) - Hunter
• 2006 – Rebecca Trethowan (Flanker) - Hunter
• 2007 – Lousie Morrison (Lock) - Hunter
• 2008 – Rebecca Threthowan (Flanker) – Hunter
• 2009 – Michelle Perry (Fullback) – Central West
• 2010 – Angella Hipwell (Flanker) – Hunter
• 2011 – Vanessa Foliaki (Five-Eight) – Central West
• 2012 – Megan Shanahan (No 8) – Central West
• 2013 – Rebecca Smyth (Nee Trethowan) (Flanker) – Central West
• 2014 – Inge Visser (No 8) – Central West
• 2015 – Annika Jamieson (Lock) – Hunter
• 2016 – Kate Gilbert (Centre) – Hunter
• 2017 – Britney Duff (Flanker) - Hunter




Corellas Regroup

Day two at the BuildCorp National Women’s Championships at Runaway Bay saw the NSW Country Corellas regroup, and come away with a win in their round three pool match against Victoria.

The 22 – 7 victory secured the Corellas third spot in their pool, and also set up a match against the Australian Services in the day four Plate Final.

It was a determined Corellas team which took to the field against Victoria, but over eagerness at times cost them scoring opportunities, and they only had a five point lead at the half time break.

The Corellas kicked into gear in the second half and started to capitalise on a mountain of possession to pile on points to take control of the match, before conceding a late converted try.

Coach Michael Burgess said the team had addressed the issues from the previous two matches, and had started to play to their potential, but there was still room for improvement.

The appearance in the Plate Final will be the fourth consecutive for the Corellas, and they will be keen to take out the titles they took out in 2014 and 2016.

Pool 1 Results
• ACT 23 – NSW Country 0
• ACT 5 – Queensland 3
• ACT 17 – Victoria 3
• NSW Country 22 – Victoria 7
• Queensland 22 – NSW Country 0
• Queensland 29 – Victoria 0

Pool 2 Results
• Australian Services 24 – South Australia 0
• Sydney 68 – Australian Services 0
• Sydney 39 – South Australia 0
• Sydney 13 – Western Australia 0
• Western Australia 19 – Australian Services 0
• Western Australia 20 – South Australia 0

Day 3 Draw
• ACT v Sydney – BuildCorp Championship Final
• Australian Services v NSW Country – BuildCorp Plate Final
• Queensland v Western Australia – 3rd & 4th Play Off
• South Australia v Victoria – 7th & 8th Play Off


Disappointment for Corellas

It was a case of disappointment for the NSW Country Corellas on day one of the BuildCorp National Women’s Championships, which are being held at Runaway Bay in Queensland.

The Corellas were defeated by Queensland and the Australian Capital Territory in their opening pool matches, which has knocked them out of contention to claim the major prize at the championships.

The team will now have to regroup for their day two match against Victoria, with the result to determine if they progress to contest the Plate Shield Final on day three.

A determined first half defensive effort against Queensland in the opening match saw the Corella go to the half time break down by five points, and they were well and truly in the match. Queensland’s hard running and aggression at the breakdown in the second half finally took its toll, and in the end they ran out winners with a score-line of 22 – 0.

ACT came out firing in the second match and caught the Corellas on the hop, and at the half time break they had jumped out to a fifteen point lead. The Corellas rallied in the second half, but it was a matter of trying to play catch-up, and the ACT were able to close out the match and register a 23 – 0 win.

Coach Michael Burgess said the results were disappointing, but they were a great learning experience for the majority of the Corellas’ team which were making their debuts at the championships.

He went on to say the pace and power at which the ACT and Queensland had played had caught the Corellas off guard, and it was something the team would need to adapt to for the rest of the championships.

The match against Victoria would again be a solid test, as the Vic’s had extended both the ACT and Queensland in their two pool matches.

Pool 1 Results
• ACT 23 – NSW Country 0
• ACT 17 – Victoria 3
• Queensland 22 – NSW Country 0
• Queensland 29 – Victoria 0

Pool 2 Results
• Sydney 68 – Australian Services 0
• Sydney 39 – South Australia 0
• Western Australia 19 – Australian Services 0
• Western Australia 20 – South Australia 0

Day 2 Draw
• NSW Country v Victoria
• Australian Services v South Australia
• ACT v Queensland
• Sydney v Western Australia


Corellas at Nationals

The NSW Country Corellas kick off their National Championship campaign when they take on Queensland and the Australian Capital Territory on the opening day of the BuildCorp National Women’s Championships.

BuildCorp National Women’s Championships will be staged at Runaway Bay in Queensland on 12, 13 & 14 May, and will feature teams from Australian Services, Australian Capital Territory, NSW Country, South Australia, Sydney, Queensland, Victoria & Western Australia.

The Corellas took out the Plate Final last year, and only missed out on a championship semi-final on percentages, when three teams each recorded two wins in the pool matches.

An upset result over Queensland in the opening match last year laid the platform for the Corellas to register one of their most successful championships, and they will be looking to repeat and improve on this performance this year.

The Corellas will be fielding a new look squad, with up to fifty percent of the players set to make their respective debuts at the National Women’s Championships. The championship draw sees the Corellas pitted against the ACT, Queensland and Victoria, which has been dubbed as the pool of death.


Coach Michael Burgess knows the team will have their work cut out for them, but is confident the players will be up to the occasion, and will have benefitted from their three match preparation prior to the championships.

The championship format sees the top two teams from each pool advance to the championship semi-finals, while the remaining teams contest the plate semi-finals, so results on the first day are important.

Country news and results are available on www.nswcountryrugby.com.au


Tough Day for Corellas

It was a tough day at the office for the NSW Country Corellas when they faced off against Sydney in their annual clash at Pitt Water Rugby Park on Sunday, which saw the hosts run out winners 27 - 0.

Clashes between the two teams are always traditionally tough, and this year’s match was no exception, as each team continued to rip in throughout the duration of the encounter.

The match was the last hit out for the Corellas before the National Championships which will be held on the Gold Coast early in May. The match was played over three sessions, which enabled the coaches the opportunity to give the squad members equal match time, and also work on various combinations.

A solid start by the Corellas had Sydney on the back foot, and with their scrum proving to be very dominate, the Country girls enjoyed the better of the early exchanges, but they weren’t able to convert pressure into points.

Sydney weathered the early storm and then set about playing an open style of running rugby, which at times had the Corellas’ defence stretched, and the teams went to the first break with Sydney leading 5 – 0.

Country again started strongly in the second session, but Sydney were able to contain the attacks before they settled into their rhythm of play, which saw them extend their lead to 17 – 0 at the second break.

The third session was all Sydney, but the Corellas continually held them at bay with strong defence, but the weight of possession took its toll, and Sydney ran in two late tries to round out the final score-line of 27 – 0.

Players to standout for the Corellas were Flanker Annika Jamieson, Lock Martha Webber, Half back Mandy Scott, Centre Sally Fuesaina, Winger Rachel Crothers and Fullback Mel Howard.

Corellas Coach Mick Burgess whilst disappointed in the final score-line was full of praise for the attitude and commitment shown by the squad as a whole.

The match highlighted to the squad the standard of the opposition they would face at the National Championships, which for half of the squad would be their first experience at that level.


Misses Hurt Corellas

A series of missed scoring opportunities in their opening match against the ACT has seen the NSW Country Corellas finish runners up at the Southern States Championships in Wagga Wagga over the weekend.

Their disappointing 12 – 0 loss to the ACT put the Corellas behind the eight ball, and despite a solid win in their second match over Victoria, it wasn’t enough to reclaim the Southern States Championship title.

The ACT match, as in past years, was a very tight and fiercely contested affair, but the Corellas missed a golden opportunity in the first half to take control when they failed to score after dominating possession and field position for the majority of the half.

During the half the ACT defended strongly, but the Corellas played into their hands by running one out, and turning the ball over with poor ball security and loose passing.

The second half was a complete turnaround, with the team from the national capital dominating all aspects of the play, but there was a difference, they took their two scoring opportunities to take out the match.

A fired up Corellas turned things around in the match against Victoria, and by half time had set up a handy 27 – 7 lead on the back of five solid tries. The second half saw the Corellas go on with the job and put on another twenty two points to run out comfortable winner 49 – 12.

Coach Michael Burgess was full of praise for his team which included ten debutants, who basically were introducing themselves to one another just prior to the first match. The nature of Country Rugby doesn’t allow for the luxury of training sessions like the other teams enjoy, so match play was a very important part of the development of the team.

The Corellas will now have two weeks off before they reassemble to play Sydney at Pittwater Rugby Park on Sunday, 23 April, before heading off to the National Championships on the Gold Coast in May.

Match 1: ACT 12 – NSW Country 0|
Match 2: ACT 50 – Victoria 12
Match 3: NSW Country 49 – Victoria 12


New Look Corellas

It will be a new look Corellas squad which participates at the first NSW Country Rugby Union representative fixture for the year this weekend.
The Annual Women’s Southern States Championships will be contested by the ACT, NSW Country and Victoria on Saturday, 8 April at Connolly Field, Wagga Wagga.

Last year the team from the National Capital took home the trophy, and the Corellas will be keen to reverse the result, which has been the trend over the last few years.

As was the case last year, the Corellas will again be fielding a new look squad, with ten new players set to make their debut in the Gold & Black strip.
Corellas’ Coach Michael Burgess said “changes in personnel was as a result of transfers, retirements, unavailability, injuries and form displayed at the Country Championships”.

He went on to say “the Country Championships was again very successful and very competitive, which had seen a large influx of new players turn out for the zones, with some of the zones competing for the first time”. “This had provided stiff competition for the players, and this was evident in the final squad selections” he added.

The Southern States Championships will provide the Corellas with strong hit outs leading into the upcoming match against Sydney later in the month, and the National Championships in May.

NSW Country Corellas Squad
Hayley Amm (Hunter), Brenda Auelua (Illawarra), Katrina Barker (Hunter), Rhiannon Byers (Central North), Rachel Crothers (Hunter), Britney Duff (Hunter), Melissa Fatu (Illawarra), Kimberley Fyfe (Central West), Eleanor Fordyce (Central North), Sally Fuesaina (Illawarra ), Kate Gilbert (Hunter), Emma Gillogly (Mid North Coast), Tahlia Goldsmith (Hunter), Jemima Henry (Illawarra), Mel Howard (Hunter), Annika Jamieson (Hunter), Skye Lovett (Hunter), Naomi Medlin (Hunter), Kathleen Ostler (Mid North Coast), Kitara Porter (Mid North Coast), Shana Povey-Hyatt (Central North), Mandy Scott (Central West), Sharnah Stevens (Central West), Martha Webber (Newcastle Wanderers).


Hunter Retain Championship Title

Hunter Women’s Rugby Union has maintained their mantle as the NSW Country Women’s Rugby Champions by taking out the 2017 title.

The union’s twentieth championships were staged at the scenic lower north coast town of Forster, and following weeks of heavy rain, which had the championships in doubt on several occasions, fine weather prevailed on the day and a successful event was conducted.

Whilst Hunter went through the championships undefeated to maintain their long run of titles, they were pushed all the way by the other zones, which shows the strength of Women’s rugby is on the up in Country NSW.

The championship title was still on the line going into the last match of the round robin format, with Central West, Hunter and Illawarra all in contention to take out the main prize, and it was only in the last five minutes of the match that Hunter put the issue beyond doubt.

Host zone Mid North Coast, who were contesting their first championships, proved to be the surprise package, and sounded a warning early in the day when they won their first match against Central North.

Whilst the number of zones in attendance was on par with prior championships, the number of players was up, and it was obvious from the standard of their play, each of the teams had had strong preparations leading into the event.

Mid North Coast No 8 Kathleen Ostler capped off a strong performance on the field by being named the Player of the Championships.

Once again the Country selectors had quite a few headaches in their deliberations to select the Corellas squad which will contest the 2017 representative program.

Country news and results are available on www.nswcountryrugby.com.au


Women's Championships Milestone

The NSW Country Women’s Rugby Union Championships will celebrate their twentieth consecutive year of competition at this year’s tournament, to be held in Forster this Saturday.

Women from five regional zones throughout NSW will play in the championships, first staged in Wagga Wagga in 1998.

The Forster Tuncurry Rugby Club will host the teams from Central North, Central West, Hunter, Illawarra and Mid North Coast.

NSWCWRU Chairperson Larry Thomson said the Country Women’s Championships were the longest running competition in Australian women’s rugby.

“The number of teams and players at the championships over the years has fluctuated, but regardless of the numbers, the championships have continued to provide players with a representative pathway,” Larry Thomson said.

Hunter have dominated the championships over the years, but this year’s event could see a changing of the guard, as the four other zone teams have been bolstered by a surge of interest in women’s rugby in Country Rugby.

Other than determining zone bragging rights for the year, the championships will also serve as the means of selection in the NSW Country Women’s Rugby Union representative team, the Corellas.

Corellas’ Head Coach Mick Burgess says it’s up to the players to perform on the playing field at the championships to earn selection in the Corellas’ squad, as past performances and reputations are history.

The Corellas will play a seven match program, which will see the team contest the Southern States Championships, take on arch rivals Sydney and participate at the National Championships.

A total of ten matches will be played at the championships in the round robin format, with the first match kicking off at 9.00am and the final match scheduled for 3.00pm.

Media Contact: Larry Thomson – 0402 883 588


Wallaroos Call Up

Kate Gilbert has received an early Xmas present following the news of her call up to the Australian Wallaroos Training Squad.

Her selection sees her join fellow NSW Country Corellas players Alana Patison and Sarah Riordan in the squad, who were both capped during the Wallaroos two test series against New Zealand earlier in the year.

Kate Gilbert’s selection has rounded off a great year, which saw her take out the NSW Country Championships with Hunter, named captain of the Corellas, leading the Corellas to an historic win over Queensland, and last, but by no means least, named as the NSW Country Women’s Rugby Union Player of the Year.

She has been knocking on higher representative selection for several seasons, but up until this year has been plagued by injuries, which kept curtailing any higher representative aspirations.

The hard running outside centre from the Newcastle University Rugby Club will bring plenty of punch to the Wallaroos backline in both attach and defence.

Women’s Rugby World Cup will be held in Ireland midway through next year, but before that the squad members will need to work their way through the various levels of representative rugby and gain selection, before they take a seat on the plane.

The Wallaroos will conduct several training camps over the summer months, before the players start their respective representative programs, which for Kate Gilbert will see her play for Hunter at the Country Championships, and then participate in the Corellas’ program, before playing at the National Championships on the Gold Coast.


Corellas to Wallaroos

NSW Country Women’s Rugby Union has two new international players following the selection of Alana Patison (Newcastle University) and Sarah Riordan (Merewether Carlton) in the Australian Wallaroos Squad.

Alana Patison (Prop) and Sarah Riordan (Centre) were initially selected in the Wallaroos Training Squad after the National Women’s Championships, and following on from the recent training camp they have been selected in the Wallaroos Squad.

The Wallaroos will tour New Zealand later this month and play a warm up match against Auckland, before taking on the New Zealand National Team in a two test series, one of which will be a curtain raiser to the Bledisloe Cup.

Both Patison and Riordan have been members of the NSW Country Corellas for the last three years, and have been regular members of the Hunter representative team for several years.

NSW Country Women’s Rugby Union President Larry Thomson said “the selection of the Corellas players in the Wallaroos Squad was just reward for the efforts they had put in, and also continued to highlight the quality of the players in NSW Country Women’s Rugby.

NSW Country Rugby Union will have further representation on the tour in the form of Head Coach Paul Verrell (Camden) and Team Manager Amanda Ferguson (Orange Emus).

Paul Verrell is in his third term as Wallaroos Coach, while Amanda Ferguson was appointed to the Team Manager’s position early this year, following a long involvement as a player, coach and administrator with Orange Emus, Central West and NSW Country Women’s Rugby Union.


Corellas Player of the Year

New South Wales Country Women’s Player of the Year has been awarded with Kate Gilbert from the Newcastle University Rugby Club being named as the top Corella for 2016.

The award capped off a successful representative season for Gilbert, as she was a member of the Hunter team which won the Country Championships, before being named as the Corella’s Captain for the representative season.

Under her captaincy the Corellas enjoyed one of their most successful seasons, which saw the team register an historic first ever win over Queensland, together with winning the Plate Shield at the National Women’s Championships.

The hard running outside centre has been a member of the NSW Country Corellas for several years, but some of her previous seasons have been marred by injury, but this season she was injury free and played some outstanding rugby.

The Corellas had an extended program which included matches against Sydney, ACT and Victoria leading into the National Women’s Championships, which then saw the team take on Queensland, ACT, South Australian and Australian Combined Services.

Kate Gilbert polled votes from the judges in the majority of the representative matches, and was a deserved winner of the NSW Country Women’s Player of the Year Award.

Player of the Year Winners

• 2004 – Rebecca Trethowan (Flanker) – Hunter
• 2005 – Tobie McGann (Five-Eight) - Hunter
• 2006 – Rebecca Trethowan (Flanker) - Hunter
• 2007 – Lousie Morrison (Lock) - Hunter
• 2008 – Rebecca Threthowan (Flanker) – Hunter
• 2009 – Michelle Perry (Fullback) – Central West
• 2010 – Angella Hipwell (Flanker) – Hunter
• 2011 – Vanessa Foliaki (Five-Eight) – Central West
• 2012 – Megan Shanahan (No 8) – Central West
• 2013 – Rebecca Smyth (Nee Trethowan) (Flanker) – Central West
• 2014 – Inge Visser (No 8) – Central West
• 2015 – Annika Jamieson (Lock) – Hunter
• 2016 – Kate Gilbert (Centre) - Hunter


Corellas Create History at Nationals

The NSW Country Corellas created history at the Women’s National Championships, which saw the team claim the Plate Shield for the second time in three years.

Victories is three of the four matches, which included a historic first ever win over Queensland, saw the team share the second best winning ratio with Queensland behind the championship winners Sydney.

The “pool of death” lived up to its name with three of the four teams each registering two wins in the round robin matches, and it came down to a countback to determine the final standings.

Country put everyone on notice on Day 1 when they caused the biggest upset in the championship’s history with a stunning 5 – 0 win over the favoured Queensland team.

The score-line didn’t fully depict the dominance the Corellas had over the Reds, as the first half was basically played in the northerner’s half, and it was only late in the second half that Queensland got a sniff of any scoring opportunities.

The afternoon match was another bruising encounter against ACT, and after holding the opposition for a long period of time, the tackle count took its toll and the ACT ran out comfortable winners 22 – 0.

Day 2 saw the Corellas regroup to take on South Australia, and after a slow start which saw them go to the break leading 12 – 7, they upped the intensity in the second half to run out winners 24 – 7 to book themselves a spot in the Plate Final.

Day 3 was Finals and Play Off Day and each of the eight teams had something to play for, either silver ware in the two finals, or seeding positions for next year’s championships.

Australian Combined Services (ASRU) included some familiar players who had pulled on the Country jersey in previous years, but friendships were put aside when the match kicked off.

The match was ferociously contested by both teams and the Corellas went to the break holding a 7 – 0 lead, but the signs were there that they were slowly getting on top, especially at the breakdown.

An early penalty goal in the second half saw the lead increase to 10 – 0, but ASRU refused to give in, and it was only in the last five minutes of play that the result was put beyond doubt when a converted try finished off the scoring to wrap up the match 17 – 0.

Corellas’ Coach Michael Burgess was full of praise for the whole squad, as each of the twenty four players had contributed to the success of the team over the three days of the championships.

He highlighted the fact twelve of the players were debuting at the National Championships, and that quite a few of those players came from areas which didn’t have regular fifteen a side rugby.

The success could also be contributed to the Country Championships which was contested by one hundred and twenty five players which greatly increased the player base, the introduction of a clean sheet selection policy and a solid program prior to the championships which included matches against Sydney, ACT and Victoria.

NSW Country Women’s Rugby Union will not be resting on the success of 2016, but will be working to identify and involve players from other parts of Regional and Rural NSW which were not represented this year.

Match 1: NSW Country Corellas 5 – Queensland 0
Match 2: ACT 22 - NSW Country Corellas 0
Match 3: NSW Country Corellas 24 – South Australia 7
Match 4: NSW Country Corellas 17 – Australia Combined Services 0

Country news and results are available on www.nswcountryrugby.com.au


Corellas Set for Nationals

NSW Country Corellas head to Sydney this weekend to participate in the National Women’s Championships which will be staged on 24 – 26 June 2016 at St Ignatius College, Lane Cove.

The new look NSW Country Corellas will come into the championships on the back of a strong preparation, which has seen the team play matches against Sydney, Australian Capital Territory and Victoria over the last three weeks.

Corellas’ Coach Michael Burgess said “the three matches played prior to the championships had been invaluable in the teams preparation, as unlike the other teams who train weekly, the Country players are spread across the state and are unable to train as a team”.

He went on to say “a clean sheet approach with the Corellas’ team selection at the Country Championships had been adopted, and this was reflected in the fact twelve players in the twenty four player squad would be contesting the National Championships for the first time”.

“Another pleasing aspect in the makeup of the squad was the number of players who came from areas which didn’t have regular Rugby competitions, which showed Country’s identification processes were working” added Burgess.

The Corellas have drawn Queensland, Australian Capital Territory and South Australia in their pool, so they will have their work cut out in what will be a fiercely contested National Championships.

NSW Country Corellas Squad
Brenda Auelua (Campbelltown), Gerda Condon (Merewether Carlton), Britney Duff (Newcastle Uni), Ellie Fordyce (Armidale), Sally Fuesaina (Campbelltown), Kate Gilbert (Newcastle Uni), Tahlia Goldsmith (Newcastle Uni), Sarah Halvorsen (Newcastle Uni), Jemima Henry (Campbelltown), Angela Hipwell (Newcastle Uni), Stacey Howarth (Orange Emus), Issabell Hunt (Gunnedah), Annika Jamieson (Newcastle Wanderers), Mele Kavapalu (Campbelltown), Dana Lautaimi (Newcastle Wanderers), Skye Lovett (Newcastle Uni), Naomi Medlin (Merewether Carlton), Alana Patison (Newcastle Uni), Sarah Riordan (Merewether Carlton), Katrina Sager (Maitland), Jessica Scadding (Orange Emus), Inge Visser (Cowra), Ashleigh Walker (Moree), Martha Webber (Newcastle Wanderers).

Country news and results are available on www.nswcountryrugby.com.au


Mix Results for Corellas

The NSW Country Corellas came up short in their quest to retain the Southern States Championship title in Wagga Wagga over the long weekend.

A close 15 – 7 loss in their opening match against the Australian Capital Territory put the Corellas behind the eight ball, and despite a 41 – 12 win in their second match over Victoria it wasn’t enough to retain the title.

Their match against the ACT was a close contest and could have gone either way, but the Corellas put themselves under pressure by not winning the majority of their own line-outs, together with failing to find touch on several occasions. A three to one penalty count in favour of the ACT also added to the woes of the Corellas, and the match could be put down as one of missed opportunities.

The second match against Victoria saw the Corellas regroup and hit the ground running from the start, and by the time the half time break arrived they had raced in five tries to set up a 27 – 5 lead. The second half saw Victoria put up stronger resistance, but the Corellas consolidated their play to run out comfortable 41 – 12 winners.

Coach Michael Burgess whilst disappointed the Corellas didn’t bring home the title, saw the two matches in the championships as being invaluable in the development of the team. He said “the new look Corella team didn’t have the opportunity to train together like other teams, so match play was the only way they were going to develop their play”.

The Corellas will now have two weeks off before they reassemble to participate in the National Championships which will be played in Sydney on 24-25 June 2016.

Match 1: ACT 15 (3 Tries) – NSW Country 7 (Sarah Riordan Try, Candice Clay Goal).

Match 2: NSW Country 41 (Britney Duff, Sally Fuesaina, Tahlia Goldsmith, Sarah Halvorsen, Annika Jamieson, Dana Lautaimi & Alana Patison Tries, Britney Duff & Ashleigh Walker 2 Goals) – Victoria 12 (2 Tries & Goal).

Match 3: ACT 46 – Victoria 0
Country news and results are available on www.nswcountryrugby.com.au


Corellas Head South

NSW Country Corellas head south this weekend to participate in the Southern States Championships which will be staged on Sunday, 12 June at Connolly Field, Wagga Wagga.

The new look squad of twenty five players which features ten new caps will be out to retain the Southern States Championships Title, but they will have to overcome strong opposition from the Australian Capital Territory and Victorian Teams.

Corellas’ Coach Michael Burgess said “this year’s squad was the best Country had fielded for several years, which was as a result of a record number of players now participating across rural and regional New South Wales”.

He went on to say “the successful and competitive natural of the Country Championships had provided stiff competition for the players who were vying for spots in the Corellas’ squad, and this showed in the final squad selections”.

A strong hit out two weeks ago against the current National Champions Sydney has placed the squad in good stead for the Southern States Championships, which will be a lead into the National Championships at the end of June.

NSW Country Corellas Squad
Brenda Auelua (Campbelltown), Candice Clay (Newcastle Wanderers), Gerda Condon (Merewether Carlton), Britney Duff (Newcastle Uni), Ellie Fordyce (Armidale), Sally Fuesaina (Campbelltown), Kate Gilbert (Newcastle Uni), Tahlia Goldsmith (Newcastle Uni), Sarah Halvorsen (Newcastle Uni), Jemima Henry (Campbelltown), Angela Hipwell (Newcastle Uni), Stacey Howarth (Orange Emus), Annika Jamieson (Newcastle Wanderers), Mele Kavapalu (Campbelltown), Dana Lautaimi (Newcastle Wanderers), Skye Lovett (Newcastle Uni), Naomi Medlin (Merewether Carlton), Alana Patison (Newcastle Uni), Sarah Riordan (Merewether Carlton), Katrina Sager (Maitland), Jessica Scadding (Orange Emus), Kelly Taylor (Armidale), Inge Visser (Cowra), Ashleigh Walker (Moree), Martha Webber (Newcastle Wanderers).

Country news and results are available on www.nswcountryrugby.com.au


Corellas Training Squad 2016

• Brenda Auelua      Illawarra               Campbelltown
• Candice Clay         Hunter                 Newcastle Wanderers
• Sheree Condon     Hunter                 Merewether Carlton
• Britney Duff          Hunter                 Newcastle Universit
• Ellie Fordyce         New England         Armidale
• Katrina Fry            Central North        Maitland
• Sally Fuesaina        Illawarra               Campbelltown
• Kimberley Fyfe      Central West         Dubbo
• Kate Gilbert           Hunter                 Newcastle University
• Tahlia Goldsmith     Hunter                 Newcastle University
• Erin Green              Hunter                Maitland
• Sarah Halvorsen      Hunter                 Newcastle University
• Jemima Henry         Hunter               Newcastle University
• Angela Hipwell        Hunter                Newcastle University
• Stacey Howard       Central West        Orange Emus
• Annika Jamieson    Hunter                 Newcastle Wanderers
• Mele Kavapalu        Illawarra                Campbelltown
• Atasi Lafai              Illawarra               Campbelltown
• Lisa Lamese            Illawarra               Campbelltown
• Dana Lautaimi        Hunter                  Newcastle Wanderers
• Sheree Logan         Central West         Cowra
• Skye Lovett            Hunter                 Newcastle University
• Naomi Medlin          Hunter                 Merewether Carlton
• Alana Patison          Hunter                 Newcastle University
• Sarah Riordan          Hunter                 Merewether Carlton
• Jessica Scadding     Central West        Orange Emus
• Kelly Taylor              New England        Armidale
• Inge Visser              Central West        Cowra
• Ashleigh Walker       Central North       Moree
• Martha Webber       Hunter Newcastle  Wanderers


Hunter Claim Women's Championships

Women’s Rugby took centre stage on the weekend with the staging of the NSW Country Women’s Championships in Tamworth.

The Country Music Capital of Australia turned on great weather, and the competing teams responded by turning on a great display of “Running Rugby” throughout the course of the round robin championships.

Hunter continued on with their dominance of recent times to claim the title, but they didn’t have it all their own way, as they had to survive an early close call from Illawarra before they powered away to take out the title.

Attendance at the championships was the largest on record for many years, which saw New England make their first appearance, and whilst they were on the wrong end of some score-lines they contested each match to the final whistle.

Illawarra returned after a long absence to make an impact, while host zone Central North were well prepared and threw down the gauntlet to the favoured Central West and Hunter teams.

The large number of participants created a nice headache for the Country selectors, who had to assess the individual performances of one hundred and twenty players before sitting down to select the training squad for the Corellas.

Country news and results are available on www.nswcountryrugby.com.au


Tamworth Host Women's Championships

Tamworth the Country Musical Capital will become the Country Women’s Rugby Capital this weekend with the staging of the NSW Country Women’s Rugby Union Championships.

Teams from the Central North, Central West, Hunter, Illawarra and New England will contest the championships which will be held on Saturday, 30 April at the Tamworth Magpies Rugby Ground.

Country Women’s Chairperson Larry Thomson said “this year’s championships will be the biggest and best attended for several years, and reflects the interest which is currently being generated for Women’s Rugby”.

He went on to say “the championships would also cater for players from zones which didn’t have a team competing, with these players to be linked with one of the five competing zone teams”.

The championships will also serve as the means for selection in the NSW Country Women’s Rugby Union representative team the Corellas, which will play against Sydney and participate at the Southern States Championships and the National Championships.

Corellas’ coach Mick Burgess said “the large number of players participating at the championships would put the pressure on all players to perform, in an attempt to win a Corellas’ jersey”.

A total of ten matches will be played in the round robin format, with the first match kicking off at 9.00am and the final match scheduled for 3.00pm.

Country news and results are available on www.nswcountryrugby.com.au


Women's Country Championships

The 2016 Women’s Country Championships will be held on Saturday, 30 April 2016.

Venue will be Magpies Rugby Club at Tamworth.

Four zones have nominated teams to participate at the championships.

NSW Country is aware there are players in zones who don’t participate in regular competitions.

An invitation is extended to any player who may like to participate at Tamworth, and be considered for selection in the Country Corellas.

Players must be over 18 years of age, or signed off under the ARU Senior Rugby Policy if under 18 years of age.

Please note NSWCRU will not endorse any players under 17 years of age being signed off under the policy.

Interested players are requested to contact the NSW Country Women’s Chairperson – Larry Thomson (0402 883 588).


Corella Named in Wallaroo Training Squad

Annika Jamieson continues to tick the Rugby boxes following the confirmation and announcement of her selection in the Wallaroos Training Squad for 2015/16.

Her selection puts the icing on the cake for her representative season, as last week she was named as the NSW Country Women’s Rugby Union Player of the Year for 2015.

Jamieson has been a member of the Corellas team for the last four years, having first being capped in 2012 which saw her cement her spot in the team as a hard working lock with a talent for ball winning in the line-out.

This season saw Jamieson move to the open-side flanker position which added another dimension to her game, which saw her start in each of the Corellas’ six representative matches throughout the year.

Her performances for Hunter at the Country Championships, for the NRMA NSW Country Corellas during their representative program and at the National Championships have continually been monitored by the National Selectors.

The Wallaroos Training Squad sees a large number of new players come into the squad, which shows the National Selectors are looking to the future for the Wallaroos playing schedule in 2016.

A training camp will be conducted on the Gold Coast later in the year, which will set the stage for the Wallaroos team going forward in the 2016 program.

Go to www.nswcountryrugby.com.au for all news items associated with NSW Country Rugby Union and their Affiliates.


Jamieson Named Top Corella

Annika Jamieson from the Newcastle Wanderers Rugby Club has been named as the NSW Country Women’s Rugby Union Player of the Year for 2015.

The award capped off a successful representative season for Jamieson, as she was member of the Hunter team which won the NRMA NSW Country Women’s Championships earlier in the season.

Her performances for the NRMA NSW Country Corellas throughout their representative program, which included participation at the Women’s National Championships, didn’t go unnoticed by the National Selectors, as she has been selected in the Wallaroos’ Training Squad.

Jamieson has been a member of the Corellas team for the last four years, having first being capped in 2012 which saw her cement her spot in the team as a hard working lock with a talent for ball winning in the line-out.

This season saw Jamieson move to the open-side flanker position which added another dimension to her game, which saw her start in each of the Corellas’ six representative matches throughout the year.

Annika Jamiseson polled votes from the judges in each of the representative matches, and was a decisive winner of the Player of the Year Award.


Corellas Come up Short

The NRMA NSW Country Corellas wrapped up their National Championships campaign with a heart breaking 10 – 7 lose to Victoria in the Plate Shield Final.

The match was the fourth for the Corellas at the Women’s National Championships which were played at Riverview College over the last three days.

Eight teams from around Australia had participated at the championships which eventually saw Sydney win back to back Championship Titles, and Victoria take out the Plate Shield.

The championships also served as the final selection trial for the Wallaroos Training Squad which will be named next week to participate in a training camp on the Gold Coast in August.

The Plate Shield Final was a repeat of last year with the Corellas facing off against Victoria, who like the Corellas had finished third in their pool following three rounds of matches.

Victoria came out of the blocks hard and caught the Corellas on the hop, and it was obvious from the start the southerners meant business and that the girls from the bush would be in for a hard day at the office.

The Vic’s scrum was dominant early and was causing a lot of problems, which continually saw the Corellas having to defend for lengthy periods of time, which eventually saw the Vic’s rewarded for their efforts.

Two tries in the half, one right on the half time break, saw the Vic’s take a 10 – 0 lead and it was going to take a big effort by the Corellas to get back into the match, and take out the result.

The second half saw the complexion of the match change, as it was the Corellas who came out with renewed vigor, and it wasn’t long before they were right back into the match.

Where the scrum was a problem in the first half, the problems had been rectified at half time, and the forwards through the scrum and line out started to win a steady stream of ball.

Victoria found themselves on the back foot and they had to defend strongly, but the Corellas finally found a chink in the defensive line and winger Tahlia Goldsmith crossed for a try which was converted by Mel Howard, and it was game on at 10 – 7.

The Corellas started to have the run of play and looked threatening on many occasions, but pushed passes and poor ball security at the breakdown continually hurt them, and Victoria was able to scramble out of danger.

Victoria continued to defend strongly, which frustrated the Corellas and quite a few golden opportunities to score were lost when poor options were taken and the pressure was relieved for the southerners.

Time eventually ran out for the Corellas and Victoria hung on to claim their first silver ware at the Women’s National Championships.

Victoria – 10

Defeated

NRMA NSW Country Corellas – 7
Tahlia Goldsmith Try
Mel Howard Conversion

Championship Standings
1. Sydney
2. Australian Capital Territory
3. Queensland
4. Western Australia
5. Victoria
6. NSW Country
7. South Australia
8. Australian Combined Services

NRMA NSW Country Corellas
Amy Broadhead (Hunter), Candice Clay (Hunter), Tammy Clay (Hunter), Renee Cross (Hunter), Jacqui Dudgeon (Hunter), Britney Duff (Hunter), Krystal Fyfe (Central West), Tahlia Goldsmith (Hunter), Niwa Gotty-Ogden (Hunter), Erin Green (Hunter), Angela Hipwell (Hunter), Mel Howard (Hunter), Annika Jamieson (Hunter), Dana Lautaimi (Hunter), Skye Lovett (Hunter), Jennifer Mauli (Hunter), Alanna Patison (Hunter),Olivia Patterson (Central West), Sarah Valkenborghs (Hunter), Ashley Van Den Boogaard (Barbarians), Inge Visser (Central West), Margaret Watson (Hunter), Natasha Watts-Tehiko (Central West), Martha Webber (Barbarians).


Corellas Overcome Combined Services

The NRMA NSW Country Corellas got their National Championships campaign back on track with a hard fought 12 – 3 victory over a determined Australian Combined Services.

The match was the third for the Corellas at the Women’s National Championships which are being played at Riverview College, and consolidates third position in their pool.

Country started strongly and had the better of the early play, but Combined Services were determined and defused the Corellas attacking raids. Both teams attempted to play running rugby, but the defences by both sides were strong, which forced a lot of turnovers which kept scoring opportunities to a minimum.

The Corellas set pieces were strong, with the lineout in particular winning a lot of ball on both throws, but the points still didn’t come for Country.

With the clock winding down to half time a sweeping backline movement by the Corellas saw fullback Natasha Watts steam onto a pass to crash over for a try which was duly converted by Mel Howard, and they wentto break leading 7 - 0.

The second saw the Corellas again start strongly and they dominated field position for the majority of the half, except when Combined Services kicked a penalty goal to narrow the score to 7 – 3.

Country continued to attack, but poor decision making, loose ball security and a string of penalties for offences at the breakdown kept relieving the pressure for Combined Services.

The scoring drought was finally broken midway through the half when five eight Mel Howard looped around and beat several defenders to cross in the corner for an unconverted try to increase the Corellas’ lead to 12 – 3.

The 12 – 3 score line proved to be the final for the match as the Corellas continued to attack but they couldn’t add any additional points, as they were held up on two occasions and lost the ball over the line on another.

The win now sees the Corellas face off against Victoria in the Plate Shield Final which will determine fifth and sixth spot at the Championships.

NRMA NSW Country Corellas – 12
Natasha Watts & Mel Howard Tries
Mel Howard Conversion

Defeated

Australian Combined Services – 3

NRMA NSW Country Corellas
Amy Broadhead (Hunter), Candice Clay (Hunter), Tammy Clay (Hunter), Renee Cross (Hunter), Jacqui Dudgeon (Hunter), Britney Duff (Hunter), Krystal Fyfe (Central West), Tahlia Goldsmith (Hunter), Niwa Gotty-Ogden (Hunter), Erin Green (Hunter), Angela Hipwell (Hunter), Mel Howard (Hunter), Annika Jamieson (Hunter), Dana Lautaimi (Hunter), Skye Lovett (Hunter), Jennifer Mauli (Hunter), Alanna Patison (Hunter),Olivia Patterson (Central West), Sarah Valkenborghs (Hunter), Ashley Van Den Boogaard (Barbarians), Inge Visser (Central West), Margaret Watson (Hunter), Natasha Watts-Tehiko (Central West), Martha Webber (Barbarians).


Corellas Disappointing Start to Nationals

The NRMA NSW Country Corellas opened their 2015 National Championships campaign with two disappointing loses against ACT and Queensland on the opening day.

Eight state teams have gathered at Riverview College to contest the ARU Women’s National Championships, which will see matches played over three consecutive days to determine the best Women’s Team in Australia.

The championships also will be the last opportunity for players to press their claims for selection in the Wallaroos Training Squad which will be announced at the completion of the event.

Day one was always going to be hard for the Corellas after drawing two of the top three seeds in the championships, but they went into the matches with high expectations following their recent good form.

The first match was against the ACT who the Corellas had accounted for two weeks earlier, but the girls from the national capital came out full of running, and immediately had the Corellas on the back foot.

ACT quickly set up territorial advantage and it wasn’t long before they had crossed for three tries to open up a 15 – 0 lead which they maintained until the half time break.

The second half saw the Corellas play with more resolve, but they were playing catch up, which brought about errors and they were unable to bridge the gap and the ACT ran out deserving winners.

Match two against Queensland saw the Corellas start on the front foot, and they soon had their bigger and faster opponents under pressure, which they maintained for the majority of the half.

This pressure wasn’t converted into points and a few lapses started to occur, which Queensland quickly capitalised on and they piled on 17 points in the latter part of the half to go to the break with a handy lead.

The second half again saw the Corellas take the play to Queensland, which saw both sides play some attractive rugby, but the defences of both teams kept their lines in tack.

With time nearly up on the clock Queensland launched several attacking raids which the Corellas repelled on their line, but the weight of possession finally told and the northerners crossed for their fourth try to wrap up the match 22 – 0.

The score-line flattered Queensland as the Corellas had looked the better team for the majority of the match, but points win matches and they came up second on the score board.

Day two will see the Corellas take on the Australian Services who also suffered defeats against ACT and Queensland, so third place in the pool is up for grabs.

The match kicks off at 11.00am and a win will see the Corellas secure third place in the pool, which will see them play off for fifth and sixth place on Friday.

Australian Capital Territory – 15

Defeated

NRMA NSW Country Corellas – 0

Queensland – 22

Defeated

NRMA NSW Country Corellas – 0

NRMA NSW Country Corellas
Amy Broadhead (Hunter), Candice Clay (Hunter), Tammy Clay (Hunter), Renee Cross (Hunter), Jacqui Dudgeon (Hunter), Britney Duff (Hunter), Krystal Fyfe (Central West), Tahlia Goldsmith (Hunter), Niwa Gotty-Ogden (Hunter), Erin Green (Hunter), Angela Hipwell (Hunter), Mel Howard (Hunter), Annika Jamieson (Hunter), Dana Lautaimi (Hunter), Skye Lovett (Hunter), Jennifer Mauli (Hunter), Alanna Patison (Hunter),Olivia Patterson (Central West), Sarah Valkenborghs (Hunter), Ashley Van Den Boogaard (Barbarians), Inge Visser (Central West), Margaret Watson (Hunter), Natasha Watts-Tehiko (Central West), Martha Webber (Barbarians).


Corellas Impress in Season Openers

The NRMA NSW Country Corellas opened their season with two impressive displays against the Australian Capital Territory and the Sydney representative teams at Campbelltown Showground on Sunday, 7 June 2015.

The matches were played in perfect weather conditions and formed the annual triangular round robin between the three unions, which traditionally opens the representative season.

Under the direction of new coaches Michael Burgess and Murray Hooper, and with eight players making their Country debuts, the 2015 Corellas displayed a new style in both attack and defence.

ACT was the first to encounter the Corellas and it didn’t take long for them to realise the girls from the bush meant business, and they quickly found themselves 14 points down on the score board. A short recovery by the girls from the National Capital saw the score line close to 14 – 7, but after half time the Corellas went up a notch to run out 24 – 7 winners.

The win saw the Corellas retain the Southern States Shield and put the team in good stead for their second match of the day against Sydney.

The match against Sydney saw the Harbour Siders open the match on a positive note, and after only three minutes had skipped away to a 7 – 0 lead when they caught the Corellas napping in defence.

This score stirred the Corellas into action and they basically rolled up their sleeves and took the play to Sydney in both attack and defence. This period of play saw the ball advanced up field with strong running by both the forwards and backs, and when in defence they continually knocked over their Sydney opponents.

The Corellas’ style of play was confronting and started to force Sydney into error, which was compounded with a string of penalties which kept the Corellas on the front foot. Something had to give and the score was leveled midway through the half, and just on half time the Corellas went to the lead 12 – 7 which they held to the break.

Sydney changed their attacking plan after the break and attempted to run around the Corellas, but the defence held and it was the Corellas who skipped out to a 15 – 7 lead midway through the half.

A steady stream of ball saw Sydney able to apply pressure, and they were rewarded when they crossed in the corner for a try to close the gap to 15 – 12, and it was game on.
It wasn’t long before Sydney scored a converted try in the other corner to go to a 19 – 15 lead, but the Corellas continued to hang in, but they couldn’t get the next score.

Sydney wrapped up the match in the final play of the day to cross for a converted try and take out the match 26 – 15, which was a little disappointing for the Corellas given the way they had played the match.

Coaches Burgess and Hooper were very pleased with the two performances, and are looking forward to the National Championships which will be played in two weeks time.

NRMA NSW Country Corellas – 24
Ashley Van Den Boogaard, Candice Clay, Tahlia Goldsmith & Sarah Valhenborghs Tries, Mel Howard 2 Conversions.

Defeated

Australian Capital Territory – 7
Try & Conversion

Sydney – 26
4 Tries & 3 Conversions

Defeated

NRMA NSW Country Corellas – 15
Annika Jamieson & Margaret Watson Tries, Mel Howard Conversion & Penalty Goal

NRMA NSW Country Corellas
Amy Broadhead (Hunter), Candice Clay (Hunter), Tammy Clay (Hunter), Renee Cross (Hunter), Jacqui Dudgeon (Hunter), Britney Duff (Hunter), Krystal Fyfe (Central West), Tahlia Goldsmith (Hunter), Niwa Gotty-Ogden (Hunter), Erin Green (Hunter), Sarah Halvorsen (Barbarians), Angela Hipwell (Hunter), Mel Howard (Hunter), Annika Jamieson (Hunter), Dana Lautaimi (Hunter), Skye Lovett (Hunter), Jennifer Mauli (Hunter), Alanna Patison (Hunter),Olivia Patterson (Central West), Sarah Valkenborghs (Hunter), Ashley Van Den Boogaard (Barbarians), Inge Visser (Central West), Margaret Watson (Hunter), Natasha Watts-Tehiko (Central West), Martha Webber (Barbarians).


Corellas Set for Double Header

It will be a busy weekend for the NRMA NSW Country Corellas when they open their representative season with matches against the Australian Capital Territory and Sydney Women’s Representative Teams.

Campbelltown Showground will be the venue this Sunday (7 June) when the NSW Country, ACT and Sydney Women’s Representative Teams play a three way round robin in what will be the first matches for each of the teams in 2015.

The Corellas’ squad has a mixture of youth and experience, together with including eight players who will be making their debuts for NSW Country Rugby Union.

Each of the players in the squad gained selection on the basis of their performances at the recently conducted Country Championships which were held last weekend in Newcastle.

The matches will not only provide an opportunity for the squad to test themselves against quality opposition, but will also be the final opportunity for the players to secure their positions in the Corellas’ squad which will contest the National Championships later in June.

Sunday’s action kicks off at 10.30am with the schedule of matches being:

• 10.30am: NRMA NSW Country Corellas v ACT
• 12.15pm: ACT v Sydney
• 2.00pm: NRMA NSW Country Corellas v Sydney

NRMA NSW Country Corellas
Amy Broadhead (Hunter), Candice Clay (Hunter), Tammy Clay (Hunter), Renee Cross (Hunter), Jacqui Dudgeon (Hunter), Britney Duff (Hunter), Krystal Fyfe (Central West), Tahlia Goldsmith (Hunter), Niwa Gotty-Ogden (Hunter), Erin Green (Hunter), Sarah Halvorsen (Barbarians), Angela Hipwell (Hunter), Mel Howard (Hunter), Annika Jamieson (Hunter), Dana Lautaimi (Hunter), Skye Lovett (Hunter), Jennifer Mauli (Hunter), Alanna Patison (Hunter),Olivia Patterson (Central West), Sarah Valkenborghs (Hunter), Ashley Van Den Boogaard (Barbarians), Inge Visser (Central West), Margaret Watson (Hunter), Natasha Watts-Tehiko (Central West), Martha Webber (Barbarians).


Hunter Retain Country Title

Hunter Zone has maintained their dominance of the NRMA NSW Country Women’s Rugby Union Championships by retaining the title in 2015.

Passmore Oval, Wickham home of the Hamilton Hawks Rugby Club was the venue for the championships, which saw teams from the Central West, Hunter and a President’s Barbarian XV compete for the title.

Hunter had too much power and pace on the day, and posted two impressive victories over Central West and the President’s Barbarians XV to claim and retain the NRMA NSW Country Women’s Rugby Union title in 2015.

The day produced some excellent Rugby, which saw each of the teams play attacking running Rugby, which featured some exciting long distant tries being scored by each of the teams.

A pleasing aspect of the championships was the President’s Barbarians XV which comprised of players from Central West, Hunter and various areas from around the state which doesn’t have regular XV’s Rugby.

Inge Visser (Central West) was named as the 2015 NRMA NSW Country Women’s Player of the Championships.

Match Results
• Central West 19 – President’s Barbarians XV 10
• Hunter 33 – Central West 5
• Hunter 29 – President’s Barbarians XV 5

For all championship results and NSW Country Rugby Union news go to NSWCRU webpage www.nswcountryrugby.com.au


Country Women’s 7’s Championships

Hunter has swept all before them to take out the NSW Country Rugby Union Women’s Seven’s Championships which were played at the Maitland Rugby Club grounds.

Maitland turned on a scorcher of a spring day which was better suited for the beach goers rather than for a Women’s Sevens Championships.

The championships saw the return of Central Coast and Illawarra to the representative scene, and together with Central West and Hunter they contested the event.

With the NSW Women’s Sevens coaches in attendance the championships provided an opportunity for the Country based players to showcase themselves for higher representative honours.

During the round robin format each team played three matches, with the top two advancing to the final and the other two contesting the third and fourth playoff.

The first two rounds of matches were evenly contested, with both Central Coast and Hunter posting wins over Central West and Illawarra, before Hunter and Illawarra scored impressive wins over Central Coast and Central West in the third round.

The final between Hunter and Central Coast saw Hunter quickly capitalise on the Coasts mistakes to skip away to an early lead, which set up a comfortable win, while Illawarra had to work hard to eventually overcome an injury depleted Central West.

Hunter’s experience showed up, as they were able to build throughout the day to score an impressive championships victory, which was highlighted by the fact they didn’t concede a point.

There were many impressive players on the day, but none more so than Hunter’s Britney Duff who was named as the Player of the Championships.

Round No: 1
Central Coast 27 – Central West 5
Hunter 22 – Illawarra 0

Round No: 2
Central Coast 19 – Illawarra 14
Hunter 24 – Central West 0

Round No: 3
Hunter 50 – Central Coast 0
Illawarra 36 – Central Coast 0

Playoff
Illawarra 19 – Central West 0

Final
Hunter 36 – Central Coast 0


Visser Country Women's Player of the Year

Inge Visser from the Cowra Rugby Club has been named as the NSW Country Women’s Rugby Union Player of the Year for 2014.

The award was the second major NSW Country Women’s Rugby Union Award collected by Visser in 2014, as she had previously been named as the Player of the NRMA NSW Country Women’s Rugby Union Championships earlier in the year.

Visser carried her Central West form into the NRMA NSW Country Corellas representative program which featured matches against Sydney, Australian Army and the Australian Capital Territory.

Hailing from The Netherlands where she was an internationally capped sevens player, Visser was appointed Corellas’ team captain and led from the front while playing at either No 8 or Flanker.

She polled votes from the judges in each of the representative matches, and was a decisive winner of the Player of the Year Award.

Visser capped off her time in Country Rugby by leading the Corellas to a comprehensive victory over the Australian Capital Territory in Campbelltown.


Country Flavour at Women’s World Cup

There is a real New South Wales Country Rugby Union flavour with the Australian Wallaroos at the Women’s Rugby World Cup which is currently being played in France.

Rebecca Smyth (Central West), Molly Gray (Hunter) and Margaret Watson (Hunter) are part of the playing squad, while Paul Verrell (Coach), Jay Tregonning (Assistant Coach) and Steve Hamson (Manager) form the majority of the Coaching and Management Staff.

Whilst this will be Molly Gray’s first Rugby World Cup, Rebecca Smyth and Margaret Watson will be making their third and second appearances respectively at the premier Women’s Rugby event.

Both Verrell and Tregonning are former Country Cockatoos Coaches, while Hamson has had a long involvement with the Country Corellas and the Wallaroos over a very long period of time.

Rebecca Smyth was voted the Player of the Series at the recent Tri Nations Series in New Zealand and only returned to Rugby late last year after having a three year break following the birth of her two children.

She has been one of the standout flankers at this year’s RWC, while Watson (Hooker) and Gray (Back-Row) have made impacts when they have come off the bench in each of the matches played to date.

The Wallaroos drew a tough pool, but have accounted for South Africa and Wales with two very impressive performances which has seen them yet to concede a try.

Sunday morning will be crunch time when they face hosts France in a top of the pool clash, which will determine who progresses to the semi-final stages of the tournament.

The Wallaroos have enjoyed great success at the last two Rugby World Cups and will be looking to better or emulate their third placing in 2010.


Corellas Wrap up Season on a High

The NRMA NSW Country Corellas have wrapped up their 2014 representative season on a high with a comprehensive win over the ACT in Campbelltown.

In overcast and wintery conditions the Corellas turned up the heat on their southern opponents to run in five tries and register a 33 – 10 victory.

The win has been judged as one of the best in recent times by the Corellas, and was built on a strong defensive effort which continually had the ACT at sixes and sevens in attack.

Other than for the opening fifteen minutes of the match during which time the ACT stole several line-outs and a tight head, the Corellas dominated the majority of the facets of play.

The opening try came on the back of a crunching tackle which forced a turnover, and prop Alanna Patison was on hand to take a short pass to run through a gap and race fifteen meters and score an unopposed try.

Mel Howard’s conversion, the first of four, saw the Corellas take a 7 – 0 lead, and they were never headed for the remainder of the match.

Three minutes later the score was increased to 12 – 0 when flanker and captain Inge Visser finished off a fifty metre movement which was instigated by breaks made by halfback Renee Cross and winger Tahlia Goldsmith.

ACT did have some good attacking movements but they were being snuffed out by swarming Corellas’ defence, which started to disjoint their flow and was forcing them to take chances.

Midway through the half and with the ACT on the attack, five eight Mel Howard backed herself and latched onto a loose pass and sprinted fifty metres for a converted try to take the lead out to 19 – 0.

ACT continued to try and get into the match, but the Country defensive line was proving hard to breach, and they were continually coming up short. On the stroke of half time they were finally rewarded when they worked an overlap and their winger scored in the corner to see the teams go to the break with the Corellas leading 19 – 5.

The start of the second half saw the Corellas immediately go on the offensive in both attack and defence, and within the space of five minutes the lead was extended to 26 – 5 when hooker Dana Lautaimi was awarded a converted try following a strong Corella forward surge.

The Corellas were really on a roll and were controlling the match, and they were unlucky not to increase their lead when they were held up over the line twice, together with flying winger Jessica Scadding being bundled into touch in-goal.

ACT continued to try and stay in the game and started to move the ball wide in an attempt to get around the Corellas defence, and mid way through the half they were rewarded when their winger was put in the clear to score an unconverted try to make the score 26 – 10.

The final score of the match came in the last five minutes when the Corella’s No 8 Mollie Gray powered through the defence with a strong run to crash over for a converted try to make the final score 33 – 10.

In an all round team effort players to standout were five-eight Mel Howard who scored thirteen points, half back Renee Cross, young prop Alanna Patison, hooker Dana Lautaimi and the back-row of Inge Visser, Molly Gray and Britney Duff.

NRMA NSW Country Corellas – 33
Molly Gray, Mel Howard, Dana Lautaimi, Alanna Patison & Inge Visser Tries
Mel Howard 4 Conversions

Defeated

Australian Capital Territory – 10
2 Tries

NRMA NSW Country Corellas
Hayley Amm, Amy Broadhead, Candice Clay, Tammy Clay, Aleasha Clingham, Renee Cross, Britney Duff, Tammy Fletcher, Krystal Fyfe, Tahlia Goldsmith, Molly Gray, Erin Green, Mel Howard, Annika Jamieson, Dana Lautaimi, Sheree Logan, Skye Lovett, Alanna Patison, Jessica Scadding, Jamie Simon, Inge Visser, Amber Willard.


Country Women Overcome Arctic Conditions

The recent NRMA NSW Country Women’s Rugby Championships saw the teams have to overcome arctic weather conditions as well as the opposition to contest the Country Title.

Emus Rugby Park, Orange turned on wintery weather conditions, which saw scattered snow falls during the day, together with constant wind blasts from the peaks of Mt Conobolas.

The extreme weather conditions didn’t deter the girls, but did have an effect on the style of Rugby each team played, with forward drives and short passing being the order of the day.

Central West and Hunter both had early wins over the improving Central North, which had to overcome the loss of key players just prior to the championships, but they extended the opposition in both their matches.

Central West v Hunter match was a real tough affair with the teams not prepared to give an inch, which was evident by the tied score line at half time. The second half saw the experience of Hunter come through, and they slowly but surely wore down the girls from the west to run out comfortable winners.

This result saw Hunter claim the NRMA NSW Country Women’s Championship for the fifteenth time which is a remarkable achievement.

Central West received some consolation when their No 8 Inga Visser was named as the NRMA NSW Country Women’s Player of the Championships.

Results
Central West 20 – Central North 0
Hunter 22 – Central North 0
Hunter 38 – Central West 7

At the conclusion of the championships a squad of twenty three players was selected to represent the NRMA NSW Country Corellas in the upcoming representative matches against ACT, Army and Sydney.

NRMA NSW Country Corellas
Hayley Amm (Hunter), Litisha Boney (Central West), Amy Broahead (Hunter), Ainslee Buchanan (Central North), Kearni Churchalnd (Central North), Candice Clay (Hunter), Tammy Clay (Hunter), Renee Cross (Hunter), Britney Duff (Hunter), Krystal Fyfe (Central West), Tahlia Goldsmith (Hunter), Molly Gray (Hunter), Erin Green (Hunter), Kate Handley (Hunter), Melanie Howard (Hunter), Annika Jamieson (Hunter), Dana Lautaimi (Hunter), Sheree Logan (Central West), Skye Lovett (Hunter), Alanna Patison (Hunter), Jessica Scadding (Central West), Jaimie Simon (Central North) & Inga Visser (Central West)


Corellas Selected in Wallaroos Squad

Two Westpac NSW Country Corellas have been selected in the Wallaroos training squad which will contest the 2014 Women’s Rugby World Cup in France.

Rebecca Smyth (Orange Emus) and Margaret Watson (Newcastle University) have been included in the thirty six player squad which will go into training for the 2014 program.

Smyth and Watson have extensive international experience, as both were members of the Wallaroos which participated at RWC2010, while Smyth also participated at RWC2006.

Rebecca Smyth (flanker) and Margaret Watson (hooker) were members of the Westpac NSW Country Corellas which won the Plate Championship at the recent National Women’s Titles.

There selection is recognition of the effort put in by NSW Country Rugby Union to promote representative Rugby, and maintains the tradition of NSW Country Rugby Union players being selected for the Wallaroos, which dates back into the nineties.

The Wallaroos training squad will participate in several training camps, before a squad will be selected to participate in a Tri-Nations Tournament in New Zealand which will involve Australia, Canada and New Zealand.

At the conclusion of the Tri-Nations Tournament the Wallaroo squad will be announced to participate at RWC2014 in France during August.


Women's Player of the Year

Rebecca Smyth from the Orange Emus Rugby Club has been named as the Westpac NSW Country Corellas Player of the Year for the 2013 season.

The award capped off a remarkable year for Smyth as she returned to play representative Rugby with the Corellas following a three year absence after the birth of her two children.

Rebecca Smyth had an outstanding season which saw her play strongly for the Central West Zone at the Country Championships, after which she gained selection in the Westpac NSW Country Corellas for the representative season.

The tough back row forward was appointed captain of the Westpac NSW Country Corellas and she led the team to claim the Plate Title at the National Women’s Championships.

Player of the Year points were allocated for each of the six matches in the program, and she gained points in all but one match, the one being when she was forced to leave the field due to injury.

In accepting the Player of the Year Award at the conclusion of the championships Rebecca Smyth acknowledged the support she had received from the team throughout the program, and thanked Country for being awarded the honour of captaining the team.

The National Women’s Championships also served as a selection process for the Wallaroos Team which will contest the Women’s RWC2014 in France, and Rebecca Smyth will be sure to be named in the Wallaroo Training Squad.


Corellas Claim Nationals Plate Title

Day three of the National Womens Championships saw the Westpac NSW Country Corellas claim the Plate Title with an impressive 26 – 10 win over Victoria.


The win by the Corellas was one of the most impressive victories by a Country Womens Representative Team for many years, and confirmed Country Women as a force in Australian Womens Rugby.


Going into the match the Corellas knew Victoria won’t be pushovers, and this proved to be the case, as after setting up a 7 - 0 lead via a barnstorming converted try to winger Jacqui Dudgeon in the first ten minutes they then had to defend for the remainder of the half.


Victoria attempted to steamroll the Corellas through the forwards, but the Country girls muscled up and continually knocked over their bigger rivals time after time to deny a score.


With the half time whistle about to be blown, Victoria finally found a chink in the Corellas’ defence and drove over for a try to go to the break with the score at 7 – 5 to NSW Country.


The second half saw the Corellas go on the front foot and after ten minutes of being camped in the Victorian half, they rolled a maul over the line for an unconverted try to lock Dana Lautaimi to take the lead out to 12 – 5.


This score ignited the Corellas and they then started to give the ball some width, which resulted in winger Lauren Denniss burning the opposition in a sixty metre run to the line for a converted try to increase the lead to 19 – 5.


The Corella backs were starting to make inroads in the Victorian defence, and fullback Amy Broadhead backed up a long run by winger Jacqui Dudgeon to cross for a converted try to extend the lead to 26 – 5.


In the dying minutes of the match, and on one of the few occasions the Victorians got into the Corellas’ twenty two, they scrambled over for an unconverted try to make the final score-line 26 – 10.


In accepting the Plate Trophy Corellas’ Captain Rebecca Smyth praised the commitment shown by the entire Corellas twenty three player squad who all contributed over the three days of competition to achieve the end result.


Corellas to Contest Nationals Plate Final

The Westpac NSW Country Corellas will contest the Plate Final at the Womens National Championships which are being played at Riverview College, Sydney.


Day two at the championships was another roller coast ride for the Corellas when they faced off against Western Australia in their third match of the championships.


The match opened in sensational fashion when the Corellas received the ball from the kick off and within the space of two minutes had driven over for a try to take a five nil lead.


What followed next was hard to believe, but within the space of seven minutes the Sandgropers scored twenty one points on the back of three long range tries by their speedster on the wing. This was not the first time this winger had gone on a try scoring spree at the championships, as she had bagged multiple tries in the two previous matches.


This scoring blitz put the Corellas on the back foot, which forced them to play catch up, which resulted in undisciplined play and turn overs which gifted the Western Australians another ten points and a 31 – 5 half time lead.


To their credit the Corellas showed great resolve and completely dominated the second half and closed the score-line gap to 31 – 15, but the damage which had been done on the score board in the first half couldn’t be reeled in, and this was the final score.


At the end of the pool matches the Corellas finished third in Pool A, and will now play Victoria who finished third in Pool B in the Plate Final.
The Championship Final will feature the two favoured teams Sydney and Queensland, which are both stacked with Wallaroo and Australian Seven Representative Players.

ASRU: Won 22 – 11

Queensland: Lost 0 – 51

Western Australia: Lost 15 – 31


Highs and Lows for Corellas at Nationals

It was a day of highs and lows for the Westpac NSW Country Corellas on the opening day of the ARU Womens National Championships at Riverview, Sydney.


Day One of the championships saw each of the eight competing teams having to play two matches, with the Corellas down to play Australian Combined Services and defending champions Queensland.


The opening match against Services proved to be a real test of character for the Corellas, as they had to come from behind in windy conditions before running out comfortable 22 – 11 winners.


The Corellas capitalised on first use of a strong wind to take an early 10 – 3 lead before losing their way and allowing Services to pull the score back to 10 – 8 at half time. A penalty goal straight after the break saw Services lead 11 – 10, and they then started to make good use of the wind to put the Corellas under pressure.


After weathering the storm with a great defensive effort, the Corellas rallied to cross for two tries to wrap up the match.


The second match against Queensland was always going to be a tough task, but the Corellas rolled up their respective sleeves and took it to the Queenslanders. Two long range tries by the Queenslanders put the Corellas back on their heels, but they recovered and started to put pressure on through the forwards.


An untimely injury to Captain Rebecca Smyth which stopped the match for a period of time took the wind out of the Corellas’ sails, and when play resumed they weren’t able to convert the pressure into points.


After the half time break the Queenslanders adopted an expansive game which saw the ball continually shifted out wide which caught the Corellas out by scoring several tries which saw the score mount to 30 – nil.


This added to the temperate and a mounting injury toll saw the Corellas slip off the pace and the Queenslanders went on to register a 51 – 0 victory.
The Corellas will next play Western Australia in their final pool match on Friday at 3.15pm.


Corellas Set for National Championships

The Westpac NSW Country Corellas are set to compete at the ARU National Womens Championships which kick off on Thursday, 26 September at Riverview College, Sydney.


The twenty three players in the squad have had an extended preparation leading into the championships, which has involved a training camp, and trial matches against the Australian Capital Territory and Sydney.


Country has been seeded fourth at the championships, with the seeding being based on the standings from the last Nationals which were held in Brisbane in 2011.


Coach Steve Hamson said “the Corellas had had the best preparation possible, as Country didn’t have the luxury of being able to train together on a regular basis like the other teams”.


He went on to say “whilst the Corellas had a lot of new faces, there was a wealth of experience in the form of Megan Shanahan, Rebecca Smyth and Margaret Watson who had all formerly represented the Wallaroos”.


This year’s championships will not only determine the National Championship, but will also be the springboard for players to gain selection for the Wallaroos to participate at RWC2014 in France.


The Corellas have received a favourable draw and will play Australian Combined Services (Thursday), Queensland (Thursday) and Western Australia (Friday) in the round robin matches, before the play offs on Saturday.


Corellas Burnt by Red Hot Sydney

The Westpac NSW Country Corellas were completely outclassed by Sydney Women in the Annual Country v Sydney Match at Bathurst on Sunday.


Sydney registered a record 77 – 12 victory, which was highlighted by a record number of players crossing for multiple tries.


The Corellas’ were behind the eight ball before the kickoff with six squad members being unavailable, two of which were ruled out with injury on the day of the match.

Country had the better of the set pieces, which saw them disrupt Sydney’s lineout ball together with taking the only tighthead of the match.


Sydney dominated at the breakdown and were quick to capitalise on any turnovers by spinning the ball wide to their backline which included a host of Wallaroo Sevens Players who continually outpaced the Corellas’ defence.


Whilst comprehensively beaten on the scoreboard the team didn’t throw in the towel and crossed for two tries which were scored by Rebecca Smyth and Margaret Watson.


Coach Steve Hamson whilst very disappointed with the result said “it was good the deficiencies were shown up in the trial match and not at the National Championships, which gave the team time to address the shortcomings”.


The Corellas next matches will be against Combined Services, Queensland and Western Australia at the National Championships in Sydney on 26, 27 & 28 September 2013.


Ashley Adams (Orange Emus), Amy Broadhead (Merewether/Carlton), Tammy Clay (Newcastle Wanderers), Aleasha Clinghan (Orange Emus), Renee Cross (Newcastle Uni), Lauren Denniss (Lake Macquarie), Jacqui Dudgeon (Lake Macquarie), Britney Duff (Newcastle Wanderers), Vanessa Foliaki (Orange Emus), Kate Gilbert (Newcastle Uni), Tahlia Goldsmith (Merewether/Carlton), Melanie Howard (Newcastle Uni), Annika Jamieson (Newcastle Uni), Dana Lautaima (Newcastle Uni), Skye Lovett (Merewether Carlton), Adelaide Monika (Tamworth), Sarah Ross (Newcastle Uni), Jessica Scadding (CSU Bathurst), Megan Shanahan (Newcastle Uni), Jamie Simon (Lake Macquarie), Rebecca Smyth (Orange Emus), Merrin Starr (Newcastle Uni), Margaret Watson (Newcastle Uni), Liberty Watters (Newcastle Wanderers).


Corellas Denied Win by Late Try

A late try by the ACT has denied the Westpac NSW Country Corellas a win in the opening match of their 2013 representative program.


The match in Canberra was the first for the Corellas in their build up for the National Championships which will be played at Riverview College on 25 – 28 September 2013.


The Corellas opened the match in positive fashion and soon worked play into the ACT half and applied a lot of pressure which had the ACT girls defending strongly. A series of unforced errors allowed the ACT to get out of trouble, and this was compounded with the Corellas having problems securing their own lineout ball.


Both teams elected to play a free flowing style of game and play went up and down the field, with both sides having good opportunities to score, but solid defence put these to an end. The Corellas got the first break ten minutes into the match when the ball was moved quickly across the field and flanker Toyah Nicholas burst through and raced twenty metres to score to take Country out to a 5 nil lead.


This stirred the ACT into life and it wasn’t long before they were pressing the Corellas’ line, and after a series of attacking raids they were rewarded with a try to lock the score up at 5 all. The remainder of the half was very even with neither team able to post points, which was due mainly to solid defence and at times poor handling and decision making. Right on the break the ACT caught Country out with numbers and crossed for a try to go to the break up 10 – 5.


The second half was very intense with both teams tightening up their play, which saw several bright passages of play up and down the field, but once again the defensive lines held. Slowly but surely the Corellas started to get on top and were making inroads into the ACT defensive line with strong forward drives and attacking backline raids.


Midway through the half the Corellas mounted a series of raids, one of which saw flanker and Captain Rebecca Smyth burst through the line and outpace the defenders on a forty metre run to score. The try was duley converted by Mel Howard and the Corellas had taken a 12 – 10 lead and were on a roll.


The Corellas had the ascendancy and continued to attack, but they started to get frustrated at the breakdown and incurred the wrath of the Referee and the penalty count mounted which relieved the pressure for the ACT.


The ACT on the back of a steady stream of penalties started to mount their own pressure, but the Corellas defence held and continually denied them any form of score. This caused the ACT to make handling errors which enabled the Corellas to work play out of the danger zone, but the problems at the set piece, scrums and line-outs, kept inviting the ACT back into the match.


With less than five minutes left on the clock the mountain of possession finally took its toll on Country and the ACT crossed for a try in the corner to take the lead 15 – 12.


The Corellas reacted strongly and had the better of the closing stages of the match, as on several occasions they were tackled just short of the line, and in the final play of the match a desperate diving tackle saw the Corellas’ winger bundled into touch just short of the line.


Coach Steve Hamson said “a win would have been nice and well deserved, but there were a lot of positives to be taken out of the match, especially the fact a lot of the girls were new to the team and playing their first match for the Corellas”.


The Corellas next match will be against Sydney in Bathurst on Sunday, 8 September 2013.

Westpac NSW Country Corellas Squad v ACTRU – 25 August 2013


Ashley Adams (Orange Emus), Amy Broadhead (Merewether/Carlton), Tammy Clay (Newcastle Wanderers), Aleasha Clinghan (Orange Emus), Renee Cross (Newcastle Uni), Lauren Denniss (Lake Macquarie), Britney Duff (Newcastle Wanderers), Miranda Falk (Newcastle Wanderers), Vanessa Foliaki (Orange Emus), Kate Gilbert (Newcastle Uni), Tahlia Goldsmith (Merewether/Carlton), Melanie Howard (Newcastle Uni), Annika Jamieson (Newcastle Uni), Dana Lautaima (Newcastle Uni), Molly Lebrocq (Armidale), Skye Lovett (Merewether Carlton), Adelaide Monika (Tamworth), Toyah Nicholas (Newcastle Uni), Toni Payne (Newcastle Wanderers), Jessica Scadding (CSU Bathurst), Megan Shanahan ( Newcastle Uni), Jamie Simon (Lake Macquarie), Rebecca Smyth (Orange Emus), Merrin Starr (Newcastle Uni), Liberty Watters (Newcastle Wanderers).


Corellas Start Campaign for Nationals

The Westpac NSW Country Corellas have started their campaign for the National Championships with the staging of a training camp in Newcastle last weekend.


Thirty two of the top Women Rugby players from NSW Country attended the training camp and were put through their paces by the Corellas’ Coaches Steve Hamson and Dave Cleal.


Hamson and Cleal were both impressed by the fitness and skill levels displayed by the players, and congratulated them on the commitment they showed to the training camp.


Hamson said “the training camp was a new concept for the Corellas, which provided an opportunity for the coaches to assess the players one on one, and also start the process of building a team culture and implementing playing patterns”.


He went onto say “Country doesn’t have the luxury of conducting weekly training sessions like the majority of the other teams, so the training camp and training sessions prior to matches were very important and had to be maximised and put to good use”.


At the completion of the training camp a squad of twenty five players was selected to play the Australian Capital Territory in Canberra on Sunday, 25 August 2013. The match will be the first of two trial matches for the Corellas leading into the National Championships which will be held in Sydney on 25-28 September 2013.


Westpac NSW Country Corellas Squad v ACTRU – 25 August 2013


Ashley Adams (Orange Emus), Amy Broadhead (Merewether/Carlton), Tammy Clay (Newcastle Wanderers), Aleasha Clinghan (Orange Emus), Renee Cross (Newcastle Uni), Lauren Denniss (Lake Macquarie), Britney Duff (Newcastle Wanderers), Miranda Falk (Newcastle Wanderers), Vanessa Foliaki (Orange Emus), Kate Gilbert (Newcastle Uni), Tahlia Goldsmith (Merewether/Carlton), Melanie Howard (Newcastle Uni), Annika Jamieson (Newcastle Uni), Dana Lautaima (Newcastle Uni), Molly Lebrocq (Armidale), Skye Lovett (Merewether Carlton), Adelaide Monika (Tamworth), Toyah Nicholas (Newcastle Uni), Toni Payne (Newcastle Wanderers), Jessica Scadding (CSU Bathurst), Megan Shanahan ( Newcastle Uni), Jamie Simon (Lake Macquarie), Rebecca Smyth (Orange Emus), Merrin Starr (Newcastle Uni), Liberty Watters (Newcastle Wanderers).


Hunter Secure Women's Championship Title

Hunter Zone is the NRMA NSW Country Women’s Rugby Champions for 2013.

The championship win was achieved at Gosford Rugby Field on Saturday, and was the fourteenth title for the Hunter Zone.

The championship title was secured by Hunter when they piled on three converted tries in the last ten minutes of the last match of the day against Central North.

After being held to a fourteen all draw by Central West who had previously defeated Central North, Hunter needed to defeat Central North by a margin of thirty four points to claim the title.

A very inexperienced Central North team proved to be no walkovers and put up strong resistance throughout a very torrid match. Hunter always had the match in their grasp, but the required winning margin was proving hard to achieve, and it was only an avalanche of points in the final ten minutes which saw the championship shield head back to the Hunter.

The standard of play was the best for several years, which puts the Union in good stead for the upcoming representative program including participation at the National Championships.

At the completion of the championships a Training Squad was announced for a training camp in Newcastle on 11 August, from which teams will be selected to play ACT (25/8), Sydney (8/9) and participation at the National Championships (25-28/9).

Championship Results

Central West 34 – Central North 0
Central West 14 – Hunter 14
Hunter 50 – Central North 5


Country Women Gear for 2013 Season

Women Rugby players from around New South Wales Country Rugby Union are gearing for the 2013 Representative Season with the Westpac NSW Country Corellas.

The Corellas will be undertaking a major campaign prior to the team contesting the 2013 National Championships in September, which will be a stepping stone in the selection process for the Wallaroos Squad to contest the Women’s Rugby World Cup 2014.

Before the players can start contemplating RWC2014 there is a representative pathway which has to be followed, which will see them represent their zones at the NRMA NSW Country Championships, and if selected undertake a comprehensive program with the Westpac NSW Country Corellas.

These championships will be held at Gosford Rugby Field, Gosford Showground this Saturday, 27th July, with matches kicking off at 12.15 pm and continuing all afternoon. There will be players from all over NSW Country competing, ranging from Tamworth and Narrabri in the North, Orange and Bathurst in the west, and Wollongong in the south. The favourites for the Championships are Hunter who have dominated the Championships for many years.

NSWCWRU President Larry Thomson said “2013 was a very important year for Womens Rugby, especially the fifteen a side version of the game, as the majority of the focus was now on Sevens Rugby”.

He went on to say “NSW Country Rugby Union had made a commitment to ensure the Corellas had the best possible preparation leading into what would be a fiercely contested National Championships”.

Steve Hamson and David Cleal have been reappointed as the Corellas’ Coach and Assistant Coach for the 2013 season, and both are keen to build on the improved results which were achieved in 2012.

At the Championships on Saturday, a NSW Country squad will be selected. The Westpac NSW Country Corellas will undertake a training camp and then play a series of matches against the Australian Capital Territory in Canberra and Sydney in Bathurst, before competing in the Australian Rugby Union Women’s National Championships which will be held at Riverview College, Sydney on 25 – 28 September 2013.