57 - 17HT 33 - 12

Sat 19 Feb 22

REPORT | Warriors Women 57-17 DMP Durham Sharks

Worcester Warriors Women ran in nine tries to record a 57-17 bonus-point victory over DMP Durham Sharks in the Allianz Premier 15s.  

The result made it two wins in as many days for the club, with the men celebrating a 19-14 triumph over Bristol Bears at Sixways on Friday night. 

Winning feeling

It was just the tonic for Warriors Women Director of Rugby Jo Yapp, who had seen her side edged out by high-flying Bristol and Saracens prior to last week’s defeat at Harlequins.  

Carys Phillips, Vicky Laflin and Elizabeth Shermer all bagged two tries apiece, during a stop-start contest in the Worcestershire sunshine. 

Brincat on the spot

Warriors got into their stride as early as the eighth minute when Cara Brincat crashed over from close-range following excellent forward play from the returning Akina Gondwe. 

Gondwe was making her first appearance since sustaining a knee injury against Exeter Chiefs before Christmas. And the former England Under-20 prop will have been pleased with her return, a flurry of rumbles with ball in hand earning Warriors good field position. 

Second try

Worcester doubled their tally on 15 minutes thanks to a Vicky Foxwell intercept try, which Ellen Murphy converted. A carbon-copy of the try she scored at Exeter last season, the centre telegraphed a looping pass from the scrum to sprint in under the posts.

Sharks bite

The north east outfit gave the home side much to ponder moments later when former Warrior Tamara Taylor dotted down in the corner. Taylor, an experienced campaigner for club and country, played a key role in DMP’s organisation and attacking nouse as they came close to registering their first point of the season.

Phillips in the groove

The hosts responded, Wales hooker Phillips crossing for arguably the pick of her two tries as she left a series of defenders in her wake with a lung-busting ball carry. The smile on her face said it all, with the front-row one of three Wales internationals returning following last week’s camp. 

On the half hour mark Sharks registered their second try through loose-head prop Sam Herrick, before Phillips grabbed her brace and the try bonus-point for Worcester. Excellent work at the line out unleashed Phillips to the line, and three minutes before the break, Laflin got in on the act to give Warriors a handsome 33-12 advantage. The wing collected Murphy’s neat grubber in behind DMP’s defensive line to sprint in under the sticks. 

Lewis in on the act

Warriors’ sixth try came three minutes into the second period through Wales scrum-half Ffion Lewis, who supported Foxwell’s jinxing run to dive over, and just short of the hour Shermer came off the bench to power over to make it 45-12.

Visitors show character

DMP hit back on 67 minutes, back-row Trudy Cowan going over in the corner after patient build-up play upfront. The visitors pushed for the try bonus-point, however Warriors showed their resilience to foil a string of attacks, before adding two further tries in the final six minutes through Shermer and Laflin. Shermer’s second score came from a quick tap and go, while Laflin added to her first half try with a piece of individual brilliance. 

How they lined up

Warriors Women | 15 Cat McNaney, 14 Abi Kershaw, 13 Vicky Foxwell, 12 Meg Varley, 11 Vicky Laflin, 10 Ellen Murphy, 9 Ffion Lewis, 1 Akina Gondwe, 2 Carys Phillips (c), 3 Carmen Tremelling, 4 Jemima Moss, 5 Amelia Buckland Hurry, 6 Cara Brincat, 7 Alex Callender, 8 Jo Brown

Replacements | 16 El Febrey, 17 Lisa Campbell, 18 Flo Long, 19 Elizabeth Shermer, 20 Sara Moreira, 21 Jess Kershaw, 22 Minori Yamamoto, 23 Lowri Williams


8m | Brincat try 5-0

9m | Murphy con 7-0

15m | Phillips try 12-0

16m | Murphy con 14-0

18m | Taylor try 14-5

21m | Phillips try 19-5

27m | Herrick try 19-10

28m | Cookland con 19-12

31m | Phillips try 24-12

32m | Murphy con 26-12

37m | Laflin try 31-12

38m | Murphy con 33-12

43m | Lewis try 38-12

44m | Murphy con 40-12

59m | Shermer try 45-12

67m | Cowan try 45-17

74m | Shermer try 50-17

79m | Laflin try 55-17

80m | Murphy con 57-17

Competition: Allianz Premier 15s
Venue: Sixways
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