Tech Waratahs Cruelled By Last Minute Try

MatchReportA last minute try to replacement winger Daniel Bunten has given Vikings a hard fought 21 – 16 victory over Tech Waratahs to take the Blueys into the top four. With Shoalhaven going down 17 – 45 to competition leaders Avondale, the competition table now resembles 2017 as we approach the halfway point of the IDRU Builders Club Premiership for this year.

In an entertaining round eight match at Saunders Oval, Tech Tahs took the lead after six minutes and lead throughout until the cruelest of endings for the home side. In a somewhat clumsy first half performance from Vikings a late try to Michal Ashby pulled back a thirteen point deficit at the break for Tech Tahs to lead 13 – 7. With an inspired running game from Lock Jack Hobbs leading the way, Vikings scored two second half tries in a much improved performance despite an outstanding defensive effort from the Tahs.    

The first thirty minutes of the match was pretty much played between the quarter lines as both sides defended strongly in a fast paced affair highlighted by some ferocious exchanges between the forward packs. An attempted clearing kick from Vikings fullback Jason Reid, rebounded 20 meters towards his own line. Tech Tahs Halfback Meninder Singh won the race to the ball to score the opening try after six minutes. The try was converted by Ethan Maker and the Tahs lead 7 – 0.

The Tech Waratahs strong defensive effort denied a clumsy Vikings attack any latitude for most of the first forty as poor handling let the Blueys down several times in attack. Maker added two penalty goals for the Tahs to go out to a 13 – 0 lead. In between goals Vikings Halfback Tom Sawden inexplicably lost possession of the ball as he was crossing the Tech line to score after taking a quick tap from ten out.

As halftime approached a re-invigorated Vikings attack started to put heavy pressure on the Tahs defense only to see Reid held up over the line. From the ensuing five meter scrum, Ashby pushed off two defenders to score a vital converted try for his side. With the home side holding a 13 – 7 advantage the Blueys asked plenty of questions of the Tech defense but the Tahs inspired by Flankers Bryn Edwards and Michael Neil held their line through to the break.

Both sides defense continued to dominate after the break with Vikings attack starting to look the more threatening. But it was Tech who had the first scoring opportunity only to be held up over the line. Maker added another penalty goal at the sixty seven minute mark to stretch the lead out to nine at 16 – 7.

Moments later Vikings responded as Ashby crossed for his second five pointer. Vikings little guys were starting to find space amongst the tiring Tech defense as Sawden and Reid combined in a swift play to put Ashby over from twenty out from the line. Vikings continued to attack the Tech line and spent most of the remainder of the match camped in the Tech Quarter.

With the pressure building something had to give. With minutes remaining Tech were reduced to fourteen when Fly-Half Aisake Tuevu was binned after interfering with Sawden by kicking the ball away as Sawden attempted a quick tap penalty. Sawden missed from wide out with the ensuing Penalty Goal attempt and it appeared that Tech was going to hang on for a well-deserved victory.

With seconds left on the clock Vikings continued to attack and when nothing seemed to be on Bunten found space outside his opposite number to scoot down the eastern touch line to score center meters in from touch. Sawden kicked a beautiful goal from the sideline to bring up the winning margin.

An effervescent Jason Reid took top points in the Player of the Year award just ahead of a very busy Bryn Edwards for Tech.

The return of Michael Ashby to Fly-half for Vikings has coincided with Vikings rise up the table as the veteran once again showed his enormous value to the side in this match. Locks Hobbs and Cody Roman played strongly with Skipper Diggins, Sawden and Reid also prominent.

Tech Fly-Half Tuevu toiled manfully trying to ignite the Tahs attack while Edwards, Michael Neil and Tim Olsen inspired the outstanding Tech defensive effort. Tech will have to find more in attack if they are to continue their very creditable resurgence.

Vikings 21 (Michael Ashby 2 tries, Daniel Bunten 1 try, Tom Sawden 3 goals)

Def Tech Waratahs 16 (Meninder Singh 1 try, Ethan Maker 1 goal, 3 penalty goals)

Other Match Results

Avondale 45 Def Shoalhaven 17

Bowral 55 Def Camden 5

University 29 Def Campbelltown 24

Shamrocks 29 Def Kiama 0   

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