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Sharks women tough out two wins against the Bunnies

They came into round five desperate for success and that’s exactly what the Sharks Harvey Norman Women’s Premiership and Tarsha Gale Cup teams managed to achieve in matches played against the South Sydney Rabbitohs on Saturday.

With just one win to show for their four matches so far, the 14-10 victory for the HNWP Sharks was a valuable one, while the Tarsha Gale under-19’s kicked off the day with a 20-10 triumph to stay in touch with the top teams with four rounds of the competition remaining.

Sharks HNWP coach Ruan Sims, while pleased to bank the two points, was still looking for more improvement out of her team with the business end of the season approaching.

“It was ugly but an ugly win is better than a gallant loss at the moment. So we’ll take the points but still plenty to work on,” Sims began.

“We’re showing glimpses at the moment, but we’re patchy. (We need) a little bit more continuity, but as I said, it’s a win. We’re improving but there is a still a way to go.”

In warm conditions at the Sharks Academy Fields at Cronulla High School, the Sharks fell behind early, two Souths tries in the opening 10 minutes seeing the visitors take a 10-0 lead.

The Sharks struck back with two tries in succession, the first by Ella Barker, the second to fullback and skipper Tiana Penitani.

A third Sharks try three minutes before the break, this one to Macie Carlile, converted by Studdon and the Cronulla side would take a 14-10 lead to halt time.

While the two teams had plenty of opportunity to add to their scores in the second period, neither could get across the line, with the Sharks holding on to put an end to a three-game losing streak and claim their second victory of the 2023 season.

In the first game of the day it was a similar story, with the young Tarsha Sharks giving up an early try, then scoring one of their own, before going to half time trailing 10-4.

Despite fielding a team depleted somewhat by injury, the Tarsha Sharks controlled the second period, scored three tries and came away with a win which pleased coach Neil Stanley.

“It was a gusty effort, I’m still on a high from that. Fantastic, a really good win by the girls,” Stanley said. “The injury list is lengthening, and we had a few big players out today. We had some girls playing out of position and some girls taking some tough carries and they did it, they got back up and kept doing it.

“We spoke during the week and before the game about going out there and playing our brand of football and putting our stamp on it and showing the Sharks DNA. It wasn’t easy, but I I thought they did that. I couldn’t be happier,” Stanley added.

The Tarsha Sharks moved to five competition points with the win and well within striking distance of the top five and a potential Finals berth.

The HNWP Sharks play the Wentworthville Magpies, the Tarsha Sharks the Parramatta Eels in round six matches away from home next week.

HNWP SHARKS 14 Ella Barker, Tiana Penitani, Macie Carlile tries, Maddie Studdon goal beat SOUTHS 10

TARSHA GALE SHARKS 20 Ava Cahill, Brooke Elliott, Sereena Moussa, Alena Pale Eli tries, Elliott 2 goals beat SOUTHS 10


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Pictures: Adam Wrightson

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