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Reality hits for Wahine Toa

Casie Waeata, centre, playing against Whanganui last year, scored two of Wairarapa Wahine Toa’s three tries, including a 40m runaway. PHOTO/FILE

RUGBY

CHRIS COGDALE
[email protected]

Wairarapa Wahine Toa 17
Old Boys Marist 95

The reality of playing in the tough Manawatu women’s competition hit home for the Wairarapa Wahine Toa at Trust House Memorial Park on Saturday.

The home side were dealt a massive blow before kick-off with former Dutch international Annemieke van Vliet ruled out with illness.

Despite her loss and the absence of several other players the inexperienced Wairarapa held their own against an Old Boys Marist side that included two Hurricanes Poua players Rangimarie Sturmey and Layla Sae and several Manawatu Cyclones, to only trail 0-29 at halftime.

The lack of game time and fitness told though in the second half as the visitors ran rampant. The home side did manage their own highlights with prop Casie Haeata running 40m for the first of her two tries, and blindside flanker Emma Brown crossing for a five-pointer.

Coach Scott Collins highlighted fitness as the biggest issue.

“It was our first game, and we hadn’t had any pre-seasons because they fell over,” said Collins, who added the team achieved the things they had been working on at training.

“Our structures, how we formulate our pods, and our game plan, most of the things we’ve been training on they ticked the box.”

Wairarapa’s next game is against Ashhurst-Pohangina, and Collins is hoping to have it rescheduled to Thursday night.

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