It was a match filled with tension in the final stages last Friday night at University Oval after Randwick fought back in salvaging a 23-23 draw with University.
The evening was full of atmosphere with fireworks, college students patronising beer tents and an exhibition race to entertain the large crowd.
Both sides threw the ball about early on. University’s defence was solid and the Students were ahead at one stage 16-3 courtesy of a James Nonu-Carling try and some handy penalty kicks by second rower Byron Hodge. But any detour to get a Magners cider would risk missing the mini comebacks by Randwick.
Randwick eventually constructed some continuity and a deft try with an Ella like wrap around move was constructed by the halves.
As mentioned there was great atmosphere at University Oval. During halftime the annual University Gift 400 metre dash was won by prop big Fava Sailosi with a little handicap advantage. This annual event is gathering a worldwide A list following. On that note, seeing Kim & Kanye and baby North in the terraces on their world honeymoon was a surprise. Who would have thought the West’s and North would be down south!
University were the first to score for the second half. Attacking towards the grandstand the Students were building good pressure. A flurry of rucks and mauls inside the Randwick 22 metre area saw winger James Dargaville come out with the ball. Dargaville transformed himself as a Las Vegas illusionist by somehow bouncing off and through a pack of Randwick players to have a clean run to the tryline for a converted try.
With their backs to the wall Randwick dug deep and commenced to construct some phases of play. In a passage of loose play, the ball was flung wide towards the hill and appeared to be knocked on. However, the referee failed to apply the whistle and Randwick tighhead prop Goodbody scored a lucky try.
The remainder of the game was tight as Randwick were hitting University with maximum force. When the trifecta hit University- sin binning, turnover and overlap coming in succession, the game was literally going down to the wire!
As the fulltime hooter rang, the Randwick backs secured the ball inside the University 22 metre area. With an overlap bigger than The Honourable Clive Palmer, the ball was diagonally kicked and regathered by Randwick for a dramatic five points. With fullback Windon to win the game with a wide conversion, all eyes were focused on the Randwick fullback. The ball sailed towards the post and a chorus of sighs was heard across the ground as it just missed.
A frustrating end for University but motivation to refocus for the hard matches ahead.