Rawson Rugby Triumph

Rawson Rugby Triumph

11 months ago

Last night the St Paul’s College Rugby XV triumphed over a strong St Andrew’s side to win the Rawson Rugby Intercollegiate competition for 2018.

A full TAG Grandstand at the University’s No. 2 Oval witnessed great football for the closing games of both the Rawson Cup and Rose Bowl Rugby. St Paul’s won the day for the second year in a row defeating St Andrew’s 33 to 19 in a spectacular match. St Andrew’s defended hard against a spirited St Paul’s offence with much of the game played in the St Andrew’s half. Read Student Club Secretary Will Evans’s full Rawson Rugby roundup, below.

Early tries in the game set the scene for St Paul’s win with Josh Smith and Guy Porter going over the line before half time. St Andrew’s scored to add to the excitement. Both teams saw penalties but a penalty try against St Andrew’s, and Angus Chadwick’s try took St Paul’s into an unbeatable position.  Excellent conversions by Will Wennerbom sealed the score, even with St Andrew’s two quick tries in the dying minutes.

The quality of Intercollegiate Rugby at the University of Sydney is very high. Both St Paul’s and St Andrew’s College alumni organisations hosted refreshments at the game, attracting a strong crowd of parents, alumni, and friends. Many visitors to the games were impressed with the skill level of all teams who played on the night. The first ever Rose Bowl Rugby 7s, played by Sancta Sophia, St Andrew’s, St John’s, The Women’s College and Wesley, was a highlight of the evening.

At the end of Rugby, St Paul’s retains its 2nd place in the Rawson Cup with a point score of 12, behind St Andrew’s 16 points. With Soccer, Basketball, Tennis and Athletics to go, St Paul’s is in a strong position to move up the ladder.

For more details about the games and Rawson Cup progress see http://www.susf.com.au/shop/item/intercollegiate-sport

Rawson Rugby Campaign 2018

Written by Will Evans

The St Paul’s College Rugby team has won the Rawson Rugby competition for 2018. Coming into the 2018 season as reigning champions meant this was the first time in nine years the St Paul’s team was defending the title.

Game One saw the St Paul’s team come up against Wesley in front of a vocal home crowd. An aggressive performance in defence in the first half, particularly from Jamie Clifton-Bligh and Josh Smith, meant that Paul’s were on top from the get-go. It wasn’t long before winger Will Simpson crossed for the first points of the afternoon. Some clinical ball distribution from fly half Will Wennerbom, direct counter-attack from Daniel Bottrell and clean hands from outside backs Will Simpson, Ed McGeoch and Eddie Poolman saw them all cross for first-half five pointers. First-half tries also came to locks Jamie Clifton-Bligh and Nelson Bours, giving St Paul’s a comfortable lead going into half-time.

The St Paul’s team did not switch-off and kept piling on the points throughout the second half. Many of these came off the back of a dominant scrum led by front-row Tom Osborne, Ciaran Loh and Darcy Breen that gave the backs plenty of time and space with the ball in hand. Second half tries were scored by Will Wennerbom, Nick Stubbs, Will Simpson, Henry Robertson and Eddie Poolman. Special mention must go to Josh Smith who not only beat the fullback to collect a Will Wennerbom chip kick and score under the posts, but also put Angus Chadwick in the corner with a flick pass for the try of the day.

Final score: 102-0

The second game of the season came a week later against St John’s College on their oval. Within two minutes of kick-off, some solid forward work up the middle saw Daniel Bottrell find space on the left edge, draw two defenders and get the offload away to Tom Abbott who crashed over in the corner. This set the tone for the afternoon which was filled with running rugby and confident hands from the Paul’s backline leading to several tries from inside the Paul’s half. Ciaran Loh, Darcy Breen and captain Nick Stubbs proved to be constant threats in the defence and created many turnovers for the Paul’s side. Henry Robertson was always a danger at the base of the ruck and combined well with Will Wennerbom who gave the side direction and exploited lapses in the St John’s defence.

The second half started well for St John’s who managed to keep the Paul’s attack at bay with a solid defensive effort midfield. However, after this period the St Paul’s team spread the ball with confidence and continued the spirited defensive efforts. Will Wennerbom instigated the try of the afternoon with a cheeky chip kick inside the Paul’s 22 metre line, this was scooped up by Nick Stubbs who knocked over the John’s defender and got the ball to Nelson Bours who got it away to Angus Chadwick for a terrific 80 metre team try. Special mentions must be made to Will Wennerbom who finished 11/12 with the boot, Angus Chadwick who scored four tries and fourth year Thomas Taylor who made his Rawson Rugby debut.

Final score: 82-0

The Rawson Rugby final was played under lights at Sydney University Oval number 2 against St Andrew’s College, in what was the final game of Rawson sport for many senior men. After 10 minutes of pressuring the Andrews line, a big scrum from the Paul’s forward pack led to number 8 Josh Smith going over for the first 5-pointer of the evening. Will Wennerbom made no mistake in converting and Paul’s took a 7-0 lead.

Some penalties saw the Andrew’s side work their way into the Paul’s half. A well-constructed rolling maul saw them strike back and the score hit 7-5. Paul’s hit straight back with a dominant period of defence led by Nelson Bours, Darcy Breen and Josh Smith that gave the side good field position. Moments later winger Guy Porter found himself with ball in hand and managed to get over in the corner. Will Wennerbom was again good with the conversion from the sideline to push the score to 14-5.

Some injuries and substitutions meant that the Paul’s backline had shuffled around a bit as fullback Daniel Bottrell came off for a HIA. This didn’t halt the momentum and within minutes the Paul’s defence again forced the Andrew’s pack backwards and Josh Smith was over for his second 5-pointer. Will Wennerbom, again, made no mistake and Paul’s were up 21-5.

The pressure on the Andrew’s line continued and the Paul’s team were awarded a penalty try for a deliberate knock on which also saw the Andrew’s side reduced to 14 men. Soon after came the try of the evening when fly-half Theo Strang found Angus Chadwick with a long cross-field kick which saw Angus extend the score line to 33-5.

As the reserves rolled on for both sides late in the second half, the Andrew’s side had a resurgence with two quick tries. Despite this, Paul’s managed to hold their lead and go on to win 33-19.

The 2018 Rawson Rugby success is credit to all players and supporters who dedicated themselves to the campaign. Rugby convenors Sean Anese, Angus Chadwick, Tom Osborne and Josh Smith must be thanked for their organisational efforts to bring the side together. Special mention must also go to coach Hugh Summerhayes and captain Nick Stubbs for their leadership on and off the field.