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Rugby: Valiant effort leads to heartbreak against Barker

1st XV Match Report – CAS Round 4 – Waverley College Vs Barker College

The match of the 2018 CAS season was upon us. Waverley College Vs Barker College. Both sides held an undefeated record heading into Round 4 of the CAS season. The winner of this match would be in the box seat to take out the Henry Plume Shield for 2018.

Waverley kicked off, with a solid breeze behind them, and a fumble by Barker had Waverley in a point scoring position in the first minutes of the match. Barker were able to work their way out of early trouble and immediately showed their class by finding holes in the Waverley defensive line. A strong run by the Barker outside centre down the left hand edge of the field had the boys from Hornsby in for the opening try of the match.

Only a few minutes later the ball was at the other end of the park. An impressive line break by Lathan Hutchinson-Walters put Conor Molloy into space. The skipper was pulled down but the Barker defensive line were always going to struggle to take down Luca Moretti who went in for Waverley’s opening try just near the posts. Waverley in front, 7-5.

Following a Barker attack, which was diffused by a forward pass, Waverley fired straight back with style. Fly half Ronald Volkman found a hole as he ran over the cricket pitch and a cheeky pop to Reece Thorn had the Waves away again. Thorn was dragged down but somehow was able to return the ball back to Volkman and the Double V were over.

From the kick-off a magic return punt from Hutchinson-Walters again had Waverley planted back inside Barkers 22 metres. The home side was using the breeze well. An infringement at the tackle saw Waverley awarded with a penalty in kicking range, which Hutchinson-Walters slotted to have the Double V up by 12.

Yet another line break from Hutchinson-Walters put Phoenix Baldwin into space. Baldwin was dragged down by the collar and a penalty advantage was called. Sustained pressure allowed Waverley to run the Barker players around and a nice hole opened up for Aisea Aholelei to put Waverley up by 19 points after 30 minutes of play.

With a couple of minutes on the clock before halftime, a final push from the visitors saw a try to the Barker loose head prop. While this was not the most attractive of tries, it would prove to play a big part in the match as it reduced the margin to 12. This put Barker well within reach as the halftime whistle blew.

Barker came out with plenty of energy in the second stanza. With the breeze behind their backs and speed to burn out wide, Barker looked dangerous early. The Barker halfback spotted an overlap down the left side as the ball travelled through the hands. It looked like the ‘Reds’ were going in. That was until the ball found its way into the hands of Jacob Tomasiello who intercepted the pass to race away to the cheers of the home supporters. Waverley were now back up to a 17 point lead.

Luca Moretti then made one of the runs of the year, charging through the middle of the line like an angry bull. Moretti managed to get inside the Barker 22 metres before someone was able to somehow lasso the big man.

A few penalties gifted Barker with important field position as they continued to build pressure without panicking too much. This pressure eventually led to a try to the Barker hooker this time. Still 20 minutes remained on the clock with the home side ten up.

A few errors started to creep into the Waverley attack, as the Double V tried to force the pass despite holding a solid lead. Barker looked like they were coming over the top and were using the pace of the wingers to great effect, particularly the right winger who was able to find space on the outside to go over the line. There were now only 3 points in the game!

Every player looked like they were out on their feet in a truly spectacular game of rugby. Both teams did not stop trying to get their teams up field. At the same time, both teams did not stop tackling each other. With just 5 minutes to play, both teams were throwing everything at each other.

Hutchinson-Walters pushed a kick deep back into the Barker half. It found space, but unfortunately for the Waves, it could not find the sideline. The left winger for Barker managed to collect the ball, dodge past a few tackles and put Barker deep inside the Waverley half.

As the ball was swung wide to the right side of the field, it was clear to see that the red jerseys outnumbered the blue jerseys. Without a mistake, the Baker tight head prop planted the ball down to the delight of the Barker fans. But there was still time and Barker were only up by two points.

Waverley somehow managed win the ball back at the kick off through some good work by Harley McGuiggan and replacement Oliver Ferguson. As Waverley worked back into a point scoring position, the referees arm went out to signal a penalty advantage.

This was it. After almost 10 months of preparation and sacrifice for this match, the CAS season was going to come down to one kick. Esctasy for one side. Agony for the other. How cruel can it get? The crowd held its breath.

As the ball sailed to the right of the posts, Barker put the ball out into touch and the final whistle blew. Barker victorious 31-29. A classic game of schoolboy rugby. All players and the coaching staff should be congratulated for the tremendous display put on show for the world to see. Congratulations to Barker College! Congratulations also to every Waverley player. While heartbreaking, it was clear that every player on the park put everything they had in for the Double V jersey – the Waverley College Community is so proud of you all!

Around the Grounds

The 2nd XV enjoyed a sensational team victory in an evenly matched up game. Only a few point separated the teams in the end. Luca Martin had a terrific game at the back and Luc Johnson did not stop working around the park. The 3rd XV managed to draw the match 5-5. Big Nicholas Corias was the only try scorer for the Waves in the low scoring but entertaining contest. Captain Daniel Allen led his team very well as the 4th XV held onto their CAS undefeated record under the guidance of Mr David New. The 5th XV match was marred by a nasty injury to Tom Bower. Tom suffered a dislocated hip. Ambulance officers were able to relocate Tom’s hip into place, however, Tom had to spend a couple of nights in hospital as he required surgery. Fortunately, Tom is now out of hospital and on the road to recovery. The Waverley Rugby Community wishes Tom all the very best with his recovery.

In similar circumstances to the 1st XV, the 16As suffered a heartbreaking loss going down in the final minutes of the match after holding the lead. All the players and coaches involved should hold their heads high as this age group has continued to develop so impressively over the years. We look forward to watching what develops next year! The 16B enjoyed a tight win under the guidance of Coaches Lachlan Drew-Morris and Ben Donaldson. Keilan Grace scored a magnificent try to get the point scoring started. The 16Cs dominated Barker with a big win on QP6. The Fadel brothers had a fantastic match. The 16Ds travelled to Sydney Grammar where they recorded a solid win. Ben Smith played a tremendous game.

The 15As put a cricket score on the Barker side up at Hornsby. Aaron Dimovitch and Ethan Flanagan were pure class in the backline. The 15Bs travelled to Joeys and managed to record a win in a very physical displayed. The side welcomed Sam Carr back who had been missing for most of the season following two nasty injuries. The 15Cs faced up against the Barker 15B team and just went down by a try. Oliver Brownie was the pick of the 15C players. The 15Ds had a few players missing in their loss to Joeys.

A reminder that all players are to ensure they commit to training and playing in all fixtures until the end of the season. Rugby is a team sport and it is not fair on players who do the right thing. Players who continue to display a poor approach to rugby will have their position in the rugby program reviewed in future years.

The 14As were a little bit scrappy in their 19-7 win, but still managed to get the job done to remain undefeated. Ronan Schocher had one of his best performances of the year. The 14Bs continued on their winning way with a huge win at Barker. This included Max Barber and Jesse Sonego showing off their amazing skill set. The 14Cs turned the result from the week before around to win against Barker. Luca Derbyshire and Josh Algie combined well in the centres, and Dominic McGrath also played a good game in the forwards. The 14Ds and 14Es travelled to play Joeys at Hunters Hill. The Es managed a win, while the Ds finished in second place on the day. Conor Hanrahan, as always, tried his heart out for his side.

The 13As had a nice win as they head into the big final match up against Trinity Grammar School. Both Waverley and Trinity are undefeated in the 13As and this looks to be a classic match to end the season. Jesse Garratt was the man of the match. Tom Gleeson had a terrific match in the 13Bs win. The 13Cs also scored a nice win against Barker on QP3. The 13Ds and 13Es travelled to play Oakhill in the early hours of Saturday morning. Both sides recorded excellent victories with Roman Mellis and James Harding the standouts.

CAS Round 5 – Waverley College Vs Trinity Grammar

This weekend it is the final round of the winter sport season for 2018. Our 13s, 16s and Opens play their last games of the season at Queens Park, while the 14s and 15s teams travel across to Summer Hill to play at the home grounds of Trinity Grammar School.

This will be the final time our Year 12 students will pull on the famous Blue and Gold jersey. It would be great to have a big crowd down at Queens Park to watch all the Open Grades play with the 4th XV kicking off at 12pm, 3rd XV at 1pm, 2nd XV at 2pm and 1st XV at 3:15pm.

To the Year 12 students playing their final match, I encourage you to take a few moments to soak up the atmosphere at Queens Park and most importantly enjoy every second of the final game you play at Death Valley! You will never forget it!

Waverley Rugby Presentation Night

On Friday 17 August, the Waverley College Rugby Supporters Club will be holding the annual Presentation Night. This year the event for families from Years 7-12, and will be held at Eastern Suburbs Rugby Union Club (22A O’Sullivan Road, Bellevue Hill). This will be a great opportunity for players and parents to gather to celebrate the 2018 season, as we recognise the outstanding player performances and say farewell to our departing Year 12 students.

Tickets are $30 for Adults and $20 for Students (price includes meal as well as a “Lucky Door Prize” ticket). Drinks can be purchased at the bar at club prices. Tickets can be purchased at:

PLEASE NOTE: Tickets MUST be purchased by 13th August (for catering purposes). No tickets will be sold at the door.

Assistance – Queens Park BBQ & Canteen

We have one big Saturdays of rugby remaining in the season and are expecting HUGE numbers at Queens Park with a number of Old Boys expected to attend the various reunions at Queens Park. Parents and friends can simply go to the link below to register your interests:

Good luck to all players and coaches in the final round of 2018!



John McCoy

Convenor of Rugby