Sydney University



By Bruce ‘China’ Lin

20 April 2024

Coogee oval is set in one of Sydney’s picturesque seaside suburbs. But last Saturday incessant driving rain converted the venue into a large gluepot . The conditions were exploited by Randwick to defeat the Students 27-8.

The scoreline flattered Randwick. The majority of the game was characterised as a dour affair. Randwick scored an opportunist try by exploiting a loosely marked ruck in the first half. The surge downfield saw some simple backing up for a converted try. Shortly after a penalty kicked increased their lead by 10-0 in the heavy conditions.

University were making hard work of their play. The Students had opportunities but not releasing the ball or a wayward entry into a ruck saw them penalised and lose momentum.

But a moment of luck befell the Students before the break. Aggressive second rower Luke Ratcliff scooped up a loose ruck ball. The big bopper took off downfield.  Ratcliff then executed a pass from his childhood idol the King, Wally Lewis. A massive umbrella pass which bobbed along the ground to the wing was received by winger Josh Calvert. Calvert applied a subtle in and away. He was brought down short of the line. But the nuggety winger got up to bounce over the line to * cachinnate loudly.

The remainder of the half played out to the same scoreline of 10-5. The team headed into the sheds ready to re group and enjoy a mug of hearty * bonox on a cold wet day.

With the ten minute break allowing the crowd to grab a hot snack or watch a news feed to see what shade of magenta Donald Trump smeared on his face , University came out of the sheds with a purpose.

Randwick were camped inside their quarter for an extended period. Winger Jack Matthews slotted a penalty to now trail Randwick 10-8. Surges downfield by number eight big Isi Naisarani and breakaway Sam Allsopp failed to secure tries. Randwick just had that touch of luck in the difficult conditions.

The match continued in this vein for an extended period until Randwick received a barrage of penalties stalling University’s momentum. A try ten minutes before fulltime and one on the bell from a screwing scrum ended proceedings. Not a particularly spectacular spectacle but Randwick using the conditions came away with a win.

Next week another tight match awaits the Students against Gordon at Chatswood.


*Cachinnate  –To laugh very very loudly.

*Bonox – Beef extract and when added to water can be consumed as a beverage.