Sydney University vs Warringah  
By Bruce ‘China’ Lin

The road to making the 2017 semi-finals just got harder for University. University were defeated 35-20 to a pumped up Warringah Rats at their Warriewood Rat Park nest.

The game could not have started on a worse note when after twenty seconds Warringah scored a converted try. The ball was shifted wide along the Warringah backline and an easy try was scored in the south east corner.

Following this early introduction to heartburn, University eventually settled down and commenced to work phases of play. However the resilient Rats were not allowing the Students any form of advantage. Ever reliable winger Christian Kagiassis did kick two penalties so that University could keep within touch. Twenty six minutes had elapsed and the Students were trailing 10-6.

This score would have sufficed going into halftime but Warringah had other plans. Again the speedy Warringah backs spread the ball to the grass banks. Their dangerous winger Harry Jones after a Rat raid scored another converted try. Soon after their cunning five eighth with a name that would not be out of place etched on the honour board of the Royal and Ancient St Andrews Hamish Angus, kicked a penalty. 20-6 was the halftime score-line and University had no illusions that a difficult mission was in front of them.

The commencement of the second half did not start to University’s plans. A turnover allowed Warringah to secure possession for another easy try to expand the score to 25-6. With their backs well and truly against the wall University mounted a fightback.

Securing field position inside the Warringah 22 metre area University were recycling the ball and were pounding towards the Warringah try line. The big ginger ninja props Harry Johnson-Holmes and Wayne Borsak were hitting the ball up. The ball was shifted wide and outside centre Chris Ingate showed his skills with a hit, spin and smashing over for a try. The Kagiassis conversion reflected a 25-13 score with ample time left.

But Angus thwarted this mission soon after with a deft chip kick behind the defensive line allowing a regather for another converted try. 32-13 was the score and time was running out against a formidable opposition. But University continued chipping away regardless. University were attacking down the blind side and a rumble in the grandstand corner saw replacement number 8 Mitchell Whiteley score in the corner. Kagiassis kicked the wide angled shot to show 32-20 on the scoreboard.

The remainder of the game saw Angus kick a penalty to ensure an adequate buffer against a Students fightback. For some reason the match ended thirty seconds prematurely without the siren sounding. University were on the attack and may have had one last opportunity to make the score line more respectable. However that did not eventuate and 35-20 will be reflected in Shute Shield results.

A true test will come next week at University against our traditional nemesis Eastwood. This game will determine if University will continue to the finals.