You have skipped the navigation, tab for page content
City defence stands up to claim inaugural Under 17s title

City have taken out the inaugural Harvey Norman Women’s Under 17s match against Country 16-4 after their defensive resolve was put to the test in an entertaining match at Netstrata Jubilee Stadium.

City took an early 4-0 lead in the first half before being forced to do a mountain of defence on their own line against a determined Country outfit.

They held fast and then came out firing in the second half to score three unanswered tries before Country scored a well-deserved consolation try at the end.

“There’s a lot of natural talent out there and both sides, City and Country, showed exactly what Under 17s competition is like,” City coach Charlotte Henry said.

“We did a high emphasis on winning the ruck, winning the collision and making sure that we had our line speed because we knew if we gave Country space and time, we wouldn’t be able to compete with them because they had a lot of speed out there.

“The best way to dominate that is get up in their faces, suffocate them of space and that’s what we did.” 

Country got off to a nervous start after knocking-on shortly from the kick-off but their defence was up to the challenge after they drove City winger Danielle Seckold into touch to save a certain try.

City regrouped with sisters Odesza and Alaianne Toia leading the charge up front with some bone-crunching defence and powerful runs. Odesza was later recognised for her performance after being named Player of the Match.

It was the Toia sisters who provided the impetus for the opening try with a one-two punch, after Odesza launched at the line before Alaianne backed up on the next play to crash her way over. Seckold was unable to land the conversion but City had the early lead 4-0.

The first half then developed into a genuine arm wrestle with Country enjoying their fair share of possession, but they could not find a way to crack the City defence.

Country back-rower Evah McKewen muscled her way over the line before being pushed back into the field of play, while Kayliyah Browning was held up on the next play.

With half-time looming Country looked to have finally grabbed a try when centre Phoenix-Raine Hippi plucked a bomb out of the air and strolled over to score but she was ruled to have been offside from the kick.

City had been forced to do a mountain of work in defence in the first half but showed no signs of fatigue when play resumed.

Centre Mariah Fasavalu-Faamausili got the action rolling when she picked the ball up from dummy-half and brushed off the attention of five defenders to bump and spin her way over the line.

City backed that up with a try in the corner to Lile Fifita after working the short side, and extended their lead to 16-0 after halfback Amirah El-Abdallah fired a cut-out pass for winger Bethany To’o – the younger sister of True Blue and Penrith Panthers NRL winger Brian To’o - to slide over out wide.

Country refused to give up and were finally rewarded for their efforts after five-eighth Sienna Thomas spied a small gap and accelerated through it to score in the corner to leave the final score at 16-4.

“For the girls and the wider game, increasing the number of girls playing our game with 17s is a pathway that absolutely needs to stay in our competition,” Henry said.

City 16 (Alaianne Toia, Mariah Fasavalu-Faamausili, Lile Fifita, Bethany To’o tries) Country 4 (Sienna Thomas try) at Netstrata Jubilee Stadium.

Acknowledgement of Country

New South Wales Rugby League respects and honours the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.

Platinum Partner

Major Partners

View All Partners