Round 12 - Results, Reports & Highlights
I hope you are well and enjoyed the long weekend.
All our Colts and Grade teams fortuitously had the bye, giving us time out to freshen up for the local grudge match against Easts in the final competition round and prior to the semi-finals. Very pleasingly, aside from 3rd Grade, every other team in the club, has already qualified for the finals, which is a great achievement in such an incredibly difficult year.
3rd Grade are equal 4th on the table and can still cement a finals position with a bonus point win over Easts. After 12 rounds, we also sit 2nd on the Club Championships ladder behind Gordon and still have a punchers chance of winning it, but we need results to go our way on Saturday to do so.
Unfortunately, tickets ‘are as scarce as hen’s teeth’ for the Round 13 Easts match, with Woollahra Oval’s extremely limited crowd capacity. Our tiny allocation of tickets has already been exhausted with our players immediate family and partners prioritised, as you would understand.
Frankly, if we had 1,000 tickets it wouldn’t be enough this week, so we sincerely apologise for any disappointment – but it’s Easts home game and is out of our hands completely and theirs as well to be fair. It sounds like a broken record I know… but that’s club rugby on suburban grounds in the COVID era!
First Grade is being played at the unusual time of 5pm on Saturday evening and in great news will actually be live-streamed on Bar TV and not on delay. We understand that the other Grade and Colts matches will be live-streamed also and once we know the full broadcast details, we will share them with you, so you have an opportunity to watch these games from the comfort of home.
Our Magic girls played last Friday night against Sydney Uni in the Major Semi Final and unfortunately went down 22-5, with the huge Uni forwards proving too dominant in the set pieces, denying our backs the possession and space they needed to show their class. We face Warringah on Saturday night in the preliminary final, our last chance to qualify for the Grand Final and another rematch with Uni.
Just to confuse matters the girls will be live-streamed, but this time on Cluch TV, at 7pm on Saturday night. Again we will let you know the drill when we have viewing instructions for that platform.
With no men’s matches last week, all is quiet on the Coaches Corner, but please read on to see Fidel’s match review from the women’s semi and what’s happening in our popular community corner. Its busy this week with Stu Donaldson’s report on our Junior Academy’s 10th season launch, we sadly farewell Ginger, fondly remember Sayley a year on and welcome baby Margot Croke into our lives.
Plus, a final plea update from 100 game veteran Dave Vea on our Red Cross Blood Donation Challenge and with only days to go we still trail Easts. That’s bloody disgraceful – C’mon Lleyton C’mon!
Up the Wicks!
The Randwick Magic girls ventured out to Sydney University on Friday night, to take on the defending Jack Scott Cup premiers and only undefeated team this season in the competition.
We have played Uni 1.25 times this year, the first when the lights blew out at Latham Park after 15 minutes, which forced a mid-week replay at Nagle Park to complete the deal. That night we went down 14-7 to them in hard fought battle, so were confident going into the semi, that we could beat them, if we played to our potential.
The game as expected was very competitive early, with no quarter given in the forwards and little opportunities out wide. No points were scored until the 22nd minute when Uni kicked a penalty goal and then after constant field position and possession, the Students finally cracked our defence to score out wide, to take an 8-nil lead into the break.
At this point neither side was firing on all cylinders, but our number 8 Oneata Schwalger was one of the best players on the field. Unfortunately, a loose high tackle early in the 2nd half by Oneata, saw her yellow carded and then another yellow to Manu Ngaronoa for repeated team infringements and topped off by an injury to Shannon Parry soon after, saw the momentum of the game change completely in Uni’s favour.
Our scrums and line-outs that had been under pressure all night, were now totally under the blowtorch with a forward down and Uni capitalised with a penalty try from another dominant scrum, extending their lead to 15-nil.
Our 3rd yellow card to Arabella McKenzie for an intercept attempt going awry, was harsh and pretty much shut the door on us wth 15 minutes to go. Another good passage of play by Uni saw them score again and go to a 22-nil lead with 5 minutes to go.
However, we didn’t die wondering and a brilliant individual length of the field effort, from super-sub and speed machine Mia Wood who either burned, stepped or swerved around at least 8 Uni defenders to score, getting us on the scoreboard, but going down 22-5.
In short Uni were too good on the night and if we can’t fix out set pieces quickly, then it becomes really problematic play to our major strength - our brilliant backline and pace out wide. Plus we just have to be way more disciplined and keep everyone on the field.
We clash with Warringah at 7pm on Saturday night at Woollahra Oval in the Preliminary Final - so that we can earn another crack at Uni in the Grand Final. I am confident we can bounce back and look forward to a big performance against the Rats, who upset the Two Blues in the other semi.
Up the Wicks!
Randwick Magic Co-Coach
Preparations are well underway for the Randwick Junior Academy and we have closed off entry now, with 300+ kids joining our program this summer, including over 40 girls.
Our 10-week training program for our 10 to 16-year old’s, kicks off on Wednesday 11th November, 2020. Training venues this year include Latham Park, Coogee Beach, Clovelly Beach and the infamous Wanda Sandhills (to be confirmed due to COVID).
Our Junior Academy is blessed to have the services of some of the best coaching minds in the country, with over 40 volunteer coaches signed up to pass on their vast knowledge and experience to our local juniors. Many of our coaches are ex-Randwick players, who are more than happy to be giving back their time and expertise to our great club.
This is the Junior Academy's 10-year anniversary. Time flies when you're having fun and I vividly remember being present with Jim Dubos (Academy Founder) and original coaches Rod Willey, Geoff James and Wade Kelly, at our first ever session at Latham Park with the original Academy intake of 60 players in 2011. Thanks to Jim's tremendous foresight, hard work and dedication, the Junior Academy has become a shining jewel in Randwick Rugby's crown.
The Junior Academy is an important link of the playing pathway for our local juniors. Together with our local village clubs and Randwick Warriors (Under 13-18's), players now have a clear and structured pathway through to Randwick Magic, Colts and Grade.
Many of our Academy graduates have gone on to represent Randwick in Colts and Grade, with the following boys making their 1st Grade debut:
Representative honours have also followed, with Will Harrison being selected in the Wallabies training squad for the upcoming Bledisloe Cup series against the All Blacks. Everyone associated with the Junior Academy is very proud of Will's achievements and we wish him well. Will and Ben Donaldson also debuted for the NSW Waratahs in Super Rugby this year, whilst Christian Poidevin joined Will and Ben playing for Sydney in the NRC late last year.
Of our current Academy members, the following boys were recently selected in the NSW Waratahs Generation Blue training squad, so Randwick Rugby's future certainly is bright.
NSW Gen Blue Squad:
Plus, a big shout out to our loyal and generous sponsors for their ongoing support of our program. On behalf of all the kids in the Junior Academy, a massive thank you to:
I'm also very pleased to announce that Randwick legend Stephen Holies and his brand-new business venture Recoverie, is joining the Junior Academy family as our major sponsor for season 2020/2021. We thank Stephen and wish him all the very best with his new business.
And finally, I'd like to take this opportunity to thank the Randwick Senior Club for their ongoing support of the Academy. We now have a great working relationship directly with them and they are fully supportive and appreciative of everything we do. Up the Wicks!
Randwick Junior Academy
On Tuesday many of Randwick Rugby’s elite along with Coogee Surf Lifesaving Club finest, gathered to farewell and celebrate the legendary life of John ‘Ginger’ Weber, at St Brigid’s Church at Coogee.
Undoubtedly, many, many more folks would have come to pay their respects too, except for the COVID restrictions in place, making a difficult period even more heart wrenching for his family. To watch a replay of the service please click here
Once again, we send our sincerest condolences to John’s wife Helen, his children Jason, Alyson and Kieren, his 5 grandchildren, his extended family and mountain of friends.
RIP Ginger and God bless you mate! Up the Wicks!
It is almost impossible to believe that a year has passed, since we lost the heart and soul of Randwick Rugby, the one and only, Jeffrey Leonard Sayle.
Saylely will always be loved, never forgotten and his legacy will live on. Check out this BEAUTIFUL video below to remind us all what we miss about the great man.
Jeffrey accepting the Nick Farr-Jones Spirit of Rugby Award.
Whooskaboomie and Up the Wicks!
Whilst we mourn the loss of Ginger and commemorate Jeffrey, this thing called life goes on and in that vein, huge congratulations go to one of our favourite player’s/entrepreneurial barista Sam Croke and his beautiful finance Julia Cacciotti, who welcomed their gorgeous baby daughter Margot Domenica Croke, into the world last Tuesday, September 29th.
Mum and Bub are reported to be doing exceptionally well, but Sam is said to very tired – maybe he just needs to give himself an extra shot in his macchiato!
On behalf of the Randwick Rugby family, we send our love and best wishes to Sam, Julia and baby Margot for their exciting journey ahead! Up the Wicks!
Our Battle of The East Blood Drive continues and with only days and hours remaining, we are still 10 donations behind Easts. How can we go to Woollahra on Saturday without completely losing face!
It’s now or never time folks – so all Wick’s supporters it is donate now or forever hold your peace. Remember will be saving many lives simply by doing so. Beating Easts is a just an added benefit.
Remember if you’re donating the nominated blood bank for this challenge is “Randwick Rugby.” To arrange your appointment to donate click here
Please roll up your sleeves and donate your myrtle green blood! Up the Wicks!
Player Leadership Group
Round 13 sees us take on Easts in the traditional local derby at Woollahra Oval - across Friday night and Saturday.
Unfortunately, due to COVID crowd restrictions there are no tickets available for the Saturday games.
Friday 9 October – Woollahra Oval (No Tickets Required)
Saturday 10 October – Woollahra Oval (Sold Out)
Our Magic Girls also play their Preliminary Final against Warringah on Saturday night.
Saturday 10 October – Woollahra Oval
Good luck to all our teams on Friday & Saturday. Up the Wicks!