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April 14, 2024, 2:15 pm
Fiji News, Sports

Rebels save the best for last against Drua Women

Venina Sauqaqa
Sports Reporter | [email protected]
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The Melbourne Rebels shocked the two-time champion, the Rooster Chicken Fijian Drua women’s team with a 34-21 win at AMMI Park.

The Drua got off to a flying start, scoring in the second minute with a length-of-the-field effort finished off by full-back Atelaite Buna.

Buna then scored her second try in the 70th minute to close the margin to six points and set up a grandstand finish.

But having conceded 88 points in their previous two clashes, Melbourne continued their impressive defensive effort before superstar Ash Marsters bagged her second try to seal an emotional win.

Like their male Super Rugby Pacific counterparts, the women are waiting on a decision from Rugby Australia about the cash-strapped Rebels’ future. Reeling under massive debt, the Melbourne club could fold at the end of the season.

But for now, the women could celebrate, with the Drua unable to keep pace with Melbourne’s work-rate around the breakdown and enterprise in attack.

Rebels five-eighth Cassie Siataga was a stand-out with a flawless kicking display.

She nailed a conversion from the sideline and also a booming 50:22 early in the second half to piggyback her team down the field.

That put the home side ahead 10-7 but the Fijians had the final say of the half when prop Vika Matarugu barged over the line just before the break to take the lead 14-10.

After another Siataga penalty, Marsters – playing in the centres – took advantage of a quick tap to slice through the defence to touch down and again put her team ahead.

The Rebels pushed the lead out to 27-14 when prop Jiowana Sauto was able to slam the ball over the line after a pick-and-go.

Despite the loss to the Rebels, the Drua will host the Western Force in the semi-finals on Friday, 19th April at the HFC Bank Stadium in Suva.