NEDDIES TAKE PREMIER GRADE FLAG
STATE OF UNION NEDLANDS claimed the 2015 Premier Grade premiership with a classic 39-27 grand final win over Wests Scarborough at McGillivray Oval on Sunday.
In a back-and-forth first half, Nedlands made the most of their opportunities, running in three tries to two to take a 24-10 lead at the break.
In a thrilling second half, Neddies – led by a man of the match performance from No.8 Richard Naylor – were able to hold off the fast-finishing Boars.
Nedlands opened the scoring with a Kauri Cudd penalty goal, before the Neddies winger then crossed for the first try of the contest and converted to hand his side an early 10-0 lead.
Soon after, Naylor barged over to extend the advantage to 17 points.
Sensing the pressure, Wests Scarborough responded immediately, when Jordan Luke touched down in the corner before Jarome Leonard-TeKanawa dived on a grubbered ball to bring the Boars to within seven points.
Nedlands had the final say of the first half when Michael Egan stormed over for his side’s third, with Cudd’s conversion giving the minor premiers a 24-10 half-time lead.
An A.J. Alatimu penalty opened the scoring for Wests in the second half, before Nedlands fullback Dylan Loversidge responded when he stepped inside to score Nedlands’ fourth of the afternoon for a 31-13 advantage.
Wests kept themselves in the hunt thanks to a converted try to Keith Andrews off the back of a rolling maul, before Cudd steadied the ship with his second penalty to push the lead out to 34-20.
Wests Scarborough’s Marty Campbell set up a potential grandstand finish when he intercepted a pass to score under the posts.
But in a whirlwind passage of play Nedlands answered, as Loversidge combined with scrumhalf Michael Ruru, who dived over from just a metre out to finalise the 39-27 result.
The Premier Grade Premiership completes a historic treble for the club, with Nedlands claiming the Under-19 and Reserve Grade premierships earlier in the day.
Top: Jermaine Ainsley, Anaru Rangi and Joe Ritche with the Cup. Nedlands overcame Wests Scarborough in a pulsating final only decided late in the game.