Sydney University


Eastern Suburbs

6 May 2023

By Bruce ‘China’ Lin


Under brilliant blue skies and ideal conditions,  University confronted Eastern Suburbs at their Woollahra base. Once again the day coincided with their annual Ladies Day booking out local sun tanning salons weeks in advance.

University commenced the game with the right objective keeping the ball alive. With a young backline on debut, they held their heads high with their sense of *Esperanto combining to score three first half tries. Prominent amongst these debutants was inside centre the lad with a name which would not be out of place in an Irish rock band – Ronan Leahy. The Western Force recruit scored the initial try with a devastating crash ball and set up another with a delicate off load.

But with youth come’s inexperience and the last ten minutes of the first half University lifted their foot off the accelerator and allowed Easts to reach 21-21. A somewhat fatal error later on.

The Tibetan monk powers of the University coaches did not work at half time to ignite University from third gear.  For the first ten minutes of the second half a mistake from the kickoff allowed Easts to camp themselves inside the University quarter and build pressure. The constant defending was taking its toll whereby University were left short down the flanks. A Wally Lewis 25 metre pass to the wing by their dangerous five eighth Bowen saw their winger dive in the corner. From then on it was like Groundhog Day.

University made mistakes and could not build any semblance of meaningful continuity. Soon Easts were enjoying a flattering scoreline lead from 26-21,to 47-21 with nearly thirty minutes having elapsed. Then University managed to construct some meaningful play after securing field position. A bonus point was secured through a second converted try however it was too late. Easts took their opportunities and punished University. 47-35 was the final scoreline.

A disappointing loss best to be learnt from. Better to go home, regroup, boil a pot of Camomile tea and watch the King Charles III coronation. You might be a monarchist , republican or hold alternate views, but a bit of *shibboleth never goes astray.

Next week University trek to the deep south and go head to head with Southern Districts at Forshaw Rugby Park.  


*Esperanto- An artificial language designed in 1887 for use by people of all nations.

*Shibboleth-An old principle that is still considered essential by some members of a party