Saturday, 31 May 2008

Randwick hand Uni their first defeat for 2008

Randwick have scored a last minute penalty to hand Sydney University their first defeat of the 2008 Tooheys New Shute Shield.

Eastern Suburbs defeated Northern Suburbs by a solitary point and Manly upset Eastwood, however all other front-runners came away with good wins.

Randwick led the match for just three minutes but still managed to run out 26-23 victors over Sydney University at Coogee Oval.

Despite losing three Super 14 players to injury throughout the course of the match, the Galloping Greens came home the strongest to ruin University’s undefeated record in 2008.

Randwick turned territory into points in the seventh minute when hooker Antonio Halangahu put over a mid-range penalty, however Uni crossed for the first try of the game just two minutes later when Nick Haydon went blind from the scrum and had an unchecked passage to the line.

Daniel Halangahu matched his brother’s efforts by making no mistake with the kick and Uni led 7-3 after ten minutes.

The Uni centre added another penalty in the 21st minute to extend the lead, however replays showed the kick actually missed to the left.

Randwick received another penalty two minutes later and took the score to 10-6 with another successful strike.

The home side copped a blow in the 30th minute when Brumbies No.8 Stephen Hoiles left the field with a rib injury, however Uni couldn’t capitalise on a penalty around the same time with Daniel Halangahu missing his first attempt of the afternoon.

Randwick absorbed a lot of pressure in the closing ten minutes, but as they tried to slow down the play and kill the half, a Patrick Phibbs box kick was charged down and when the ball was quickly moved to the left Brumbies centre Leo Afeaki scored on the left.Adding insult to scoreboard injury, Phibbs was yellow carded for holding back a chaser on the charge down, Halangahu converted and Uni went into the break with a 17-6 lead and a one-man advantage for the first ten minutes of the second half.Randwick’s chances dipped on their return to the field in the second half without Waratahs prop Sekope Kepu, however it wasn’t long before Uni lost their inspirational skipper Tim Davidson.Uni were unable to extend their lead while Phibbs was on the field, and in the last play before the Brumbies No.9 returned Randwick were even held up next to the upright.

However a scrum win and a penalty later, Lotu Taukeiaho crashed over for Randwick while another advantage was being played. In a mirror image of Afeaki’s try, Uni flanker Jono Jenkins was sin binned while the kick was being taken for a deliberate infringement despite Randwick eventually scoring the try.

Antonio Halangahu kept his perfect record with the conversion closing the gap to 13-17 and the Galloping Greens now had the one-man advantage in the 54th minute.

Soon after the restart Randwick conceded a penalty and the successful kick took the margin back out to a converted try.Daniel Halangahu added another penalty in the 60th minute and entering the last quarter of the game Sydney University had a 23-13 lead.The Wicks lost their third Super 14 player when Josh Valentine left the field, however the home side didn’t give up and when Metui Maile scored in the 68th minute the margin was back to five.Randwick continued to push, and in the end it was Phibbs who crashed over in the corner following a driving maul from the lineout to level the scores in the 34th minute.Antonio Halangahu pulled the conversion and with five minutes to play the score was 23-all.Randwick dominated field position in the closing stages, and with two minutes remaining University conceded a penalty right in front. Replacement back Toby Browne stepped up and nailed the penalty to give Randwick the lead for the first time since the ninth minute.A scuffle ensued in the final ruck of the game which continued after full-time, however the Galloping Greens stood tall after handing Sydney University their first defeat of the season.While the result was not enough to shift University from the top of the table, it definitely sent a sign to the rest of the competition that the defending champions are not invincible.
Randwick 26 (Lotu Taukeiaho, Metui Maile, Patrick Phibbs tries; Antonio Halangahu 2 pens, con, Toby Browne pen) d Sydney University 23 (Nick Haydon, Leo Afeaki tries; Daniel Halangahu 3 pens, 2 cons) at Coogee Oval. Half-time Sydney University 17-6: Referee: Damien MitchelmoreNORTHERN SUBURBS V EASTERN SUBURBS AT NORTH SYDNEY OVAL
Easts have started moving back in the right direction with a one-point victory over Northern Suburbs at North Sydney Oval.Easts scored less tries, however the boot of Vitori Buatava got the visitors home with a 13-point haul.In a game of two halves, Easts hung for the 33-32 win, however Norths will take away two bonus points after scoring five tries.Eastern Suburbs 33 (Will Brock 2, John Collignon, Anton LaVin tries; Vitori Buatava 3 pens, 2 cons) d Northern Suburbs 32 (Al Manning 2, Steven Evans 2, Dan Watson-Wood tries; Chris Burnett 2 cons, pen) at North Sydney Oval. Referee: Daniel Cheever PARRAMATTA V GORDON AT TWO BLUES PARK Parramatta simply couldn’t go with Gordon in the second half with the Highlanders running out 31-15 victors at Chatswood.Gordon half just a six-point advantage at half-time, however went away with the match in the second forty to remain in second on the competition table.Gordon 31 (Alex Gluth, Ed Gower, Viliame Ratu, Terry Preston, Sisa Waqa tries; Dave Harvey 2 pens) d Parramatta 15 (Paula Kaveinga, Tito Mua tries; Josh Weeks con, pen) at Two Blues Park. Half-time: Gordon 21-15. Referee: Julian PritchardWEST HARBOUR V PENRITH AT CONCORD OVAL
West Harbour returned to the winners circle with a 50-26 victory over Penrith at Concord Oval.The win was set up on the back of a 31-5 first half, with Rory Sidey grabbing a double for the Pirates.The Emus again failed to put together two good halves, and despite scoring three second half tries to earn a bonus point and outscore their opponents at the back end of the game, defence was again the issue.West Harbour 50 (Rory Sidey 2, John Sinisa, Nick Reily, Steve Massey, Isaiah Pine, Chris Aho, Luke Hunter tries; Ben Martin 5 cons) d Penrith 26 (Jono Rolfe 2, Shem Evans, Liam Winton tries; Brendan Craig 3 cons) at Concord Oval. Half-time: 31-5. Referee: Andrew Lees.

Manly have outmuscled Eastwood for a 19-6 victory at Manly Oval.

Inspired by the presence of George Smith at No.8, the Marlins were never headed after taking a 14-0 half-time lead, and scored the only three tries of the match on their way to hard-fought victory.Manly 19 (Daniel Collins, Will Brame, Lupini Siale tries; Adam D’Arcy 2 cons) d Eastwood 6 (Ben Batger pen, drop) at Manly Oval. Half-time: Manly 14-0. Referee: Grant MacNeillSOUTHERN DISTRICTS V WARRINGAH AT FORSHAW PARK Warringah have blown away Southern Districts in the second half to record a 52-22 victory at Forshaw Park.The Rebels did well to go into the break at 10-all, however the Rats simply overpowered Souths on their way to a six tries to three victory.Clint Eadie was the star for Warringah, collecting a season high haul of 32 points.

Warringah 52 (Ed Doyle 2, Clint Eadie 2, Mitchell Greenway, Pat McCabe tries; Clint Eadie 5 cons, 4 pens) d Southern Districts 22 (James McCormack, Israel Stephens, Ben Tickle tries; Michael Black 2 cons, pen) at Forshaw Park. Half-time: 10-all. Referee: Nathan Pearce