Missy Williams, with ball, struggles to break free from a Manawatu defender. PHOTO/JADE CVETKOV


Wairarapa-Bush 48
Manawatu 80


Wairarapa-Bush women’s coach Scott Collins is thrilled with the team’s effort, despite being on the wrong end of a big scoreline at Trust House Memorial Park on Saturday.

At times the home side struggled to contain the visitors, who had several fringe Manawatu Cyclones players on the field, as well as former Black Fern Silica Winiata at first-five. Her influence was massive, and she contributed 35 points, including five tries.

“I thought we did really well considering the calibre of players Manawatu had, and when you are up against the likes of Selica Winiata running the show, she showed her class,” said Collins.

“When we had the ball in hand, we were pretty dangerous so if you remove the third quarter where we kind of lost our shape a bit and forgot how to tackle it was a really good game.

“I think we leaked about 30-odd points in that one quarter, but we came back and finished the game strong and scored the last points.”

Wai-Bush contributed eight tries in the highly entertaining encounter.

However, it could be the last game for the team this season, after East Coast withdrew from their planned fixture in Napier at Labour Weekend.

Collins said they are trying to organise a return clash with Manawatu in Palmerston North in two weeks.