REPORT | Worcester Valkyries 5-43 Firwood Waterloo Ladies

BY ART DE ROCHE

Worcester Valkyries fell to a 43-5 defeat as Firwood Waterloo Ladies proved too strong at Sixways in Round 18 of Tyrrells Premier 15s on Saturday.

Both sides exchanged tries early on in an electric start as Meg Varley went over for Valkyries but the visitors proved too strong as Ash Neale (2), Vanessa Temple (2), Laura Perrin and Jo Devine went over to secure the win.

After a strong initial drive from Firwood Waterloo, Valkyries did well to turn the ball over inside their 22 but in trying to break up the pitch, a pass was intercepted by Neale who went in under the posts.

Looking to make amends, Valkyries responded straight away as Brooke Clarke won possession back from the restart.

Valkyries then took the ball deep into Firwood territory with some phase-play before spreading the ball to Varley who ran through to score.

Following a lively opening ten minutes, the visitors took the upper hand on the 20-minute mark as Danielle Wiseman broke the Valkyries’ defensive line to slip into the home 22 where she found the supporting run of Perrin who scored under the posts.

Unable to fully break down the home defence before half-time, the visitors had to settle for a penalty which was kicked over by Beth Stott.

Returning to the pitch for the second-half, Valkyries went on to make an imposing start by taking the ball deep into the Firwood half, but the visitors’ defence were a match for the hosts’ attack on this occasion.

After weathering an early Valkyries storm, Firwood put another try on the scoreboard as Devine cut through off the back of a lineout.

Valkyries almost got themselves back into the game after an hour as Charlie Wilcock showed great anticipation to intercept a pass but Firwood were able to get numbers back and regain possession of the ball.

As the game was coming to a close, the visiting side then put together a flurry of tries to put the tie to bed.

Neale bagged her second of the game after charging down a Valkyries kick and running in unchallenged.

Then Temple added a couple of tries – one coming as a result of Firwood playing down the blindside and the other a run under the posts after an interception.

Valkyries’ next fixture will be the rescheduled Round 16 clash against Darlington Mowden Sharks at Sixways on Saturday 31 March (kick-off 2pm).

Valkyries | 15 Jade Mullen (Cox 40), 14 Brooke Clarke, 13 Charlie Murray (Hayward 65), 12 Megan Varley, 11 Vicky Laflin, 10 Vicky Foxwell (Scholes 46), 9 Sian Moore; 1 Tracy Balmer (Gondwe 70), 2 Lark Davies (C), 3 Meg York (Leatherland 70), 4 Daisy French, 5 Cara Brincat, 6 Morfudd Ifans, 7 Charlie Wilcock (Thomas 70), 8 Zoe Bennion (Alevropolous 65)

Replacements | 16 Akina Gondwe, 17 Lauren Leatherland, 18 Laura Thomas, 19 Alanna Alevropolous, 20 Eloise Hayward, 21 Rebecca Scholes, 22 Carys Cox

Timeline
03m | Neale try 0-5
04m | Stott con 0-7
08m | Varley try 5-7
21m | Perrin try 5-10
22m | Stott con 5-14
34m | Stott pen 5-17
47m | Devine try 5-22
48m | Stott con 5-24
70m | Neale try 5-29
71m | Stott con 5-31
74m | Temple try 5-36
77m | Temple try 5-41
78m | Stott con 5-43

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