Newcastle based representative teams performed creditably in the NSW Waratahs Men’s Under 20 State 7s Championship and the NSW Waratahs Women’s Open State 7s Championship played in Newcastle over the weekend.


The inaugural championships were held at No.2 Sportsground and attracted strong representative teams from both Sydney and NSW country areas.


The Newcastle women’s team reached the final of their competition while the men’s team played their way into the semi-finals.


Chairman of the local organising committee, Mark Queenan, said both teams were undefeated during their pool matches but faced tough opposition in the finals.


“The two Newcastle teams can be very proud of their effort, especially the women’s side which played beyond expectations to play in their final,” said Mark.


“Their performance showed that Newcastle has a bright future in 7s Rugby which has grown very quickly in popularity, especially since the women won the Gold Medal at the recent Rip Olympics.”


The Hunter women’s team defeated Far North Coast 27-5, Waverley 15-10 and Macquarie University 20-7 in their three pool matches. They lined up again against Waverly in the final but the Sydney team’s experience and attacking flair proved too much for the local girls who went down gallantly 31-7.


The Newcastle men’s team recently won the shield at the Mudgee 7s and were second in the Southern Highlands tournament and were expected to be among the front-runners for the Under 20 title.


Their three pool matches resulted in wins over Parramatta Light Blue 45-5, Oatley 19-5 and Eastern Suburbs 24-12. The wins put Newcastle into the Cup Semi-Final but they came up against a strong Parramatta Dark Blue and went down 27-5.


Warringah won the Under 20 competition in defeating Parramatta Dark Blue 39-12 in the final.


The championships were organised by NSW Rugby in conjunction with Newcastle Hunter Rugby Union and The Hawthorne Club, which supports rugby development in the Hunter Region.


The success of the inaugural championships has laid the foundation for the tournament to an annual event on the Australian Rugby Union and NSW Waratahs calendars.


Newcastle Men’s Under 20 Representative Squad:

Liam Bowden, Dan Malloy, Kaiden Howard (Singleton); Max Stafford, Luke Rees (Maitland), Darcy Christie-Johnston, Rylan Gibson (University), Alex Hills, Lachlan Tonks, Jordan Bower (Merewether Carlton), Caileb Gerard (Lake Macquarie); Dominic Vervaart (Hamilton).


Women’s Open Representative Squad:

Martha Webber, Emily Leversha, Alanna Patison, Charmane Wells,Trudy Warboys, Synetta Manns,Teliah Buckton, Rachael White, Maddy O’ Mahony, Felicity Carroll