Cottesloe Lose Out To Nedlands

In appalling conditions, Nedlands revenged the defeat they suffered at Cottesloe’s hand earlier in the year by coming out on top at the foreshore by 24 points to 13. In the first twenty minutes both sides struggled immensely with the treacherous conditions and neither side could string more than a couple of phases together. The sides traded a penalty apiece but neither team looked like threatening the try line. It was Cottesloe, with the wind at their backs, who looked a little  more composed up front and with around ten minutes to go before half time, captain Kieran elected to take easy points on front of the Nedlands goal on the one occasion where Cottesloe broke into the Nedlands 22. Little enough happened for the remainder of the half and Cottesloe went in at half time ahead by 6 points to 3.
Although the conditions eased off slightly at the beginning of the second period, the playing surface had been more or less destroyed and it made it impossible for either side to pick up the pace and play expansively. With the wind at their backs, Nedlands began to take territorial advantage playing a simple style of rugby and it immediately paid dividends. The men in blue and yellow were sending their big men down the 10 and 12 channels and young Jason Badenhorst and Sean “Morne” Martin had to make a lot of tackles. The long kicking from the Nedlands fullback forced Zu Abrahams and Scotty Nichol to run it back against the wind and slowly but surely Nedlands began to turn the screw. A brutally direct try was quickly followed by another and both were converted for Nedlands and the score blew out to 17 points to 6. Cottesloe were forced to try and take chances in the conditions and this allowed Nedlands to force more errors and they pounced for a third try. At 24-6 the match was more or less over but Cottesloe kept battling to the end and were rewarded with an incisive score from Marcel Brache. With points so tight between 3rd and 5th  on the ladder, every last score will no doubt prove significant and it was a positive finish to the game for Cottesloe.
Cottesloe went into this game much depleted due to injury and were still leading against the top time in the competition at half time. They also finished the stronger which bodes well for the team going into the final matches. Kaisa Reidy put in an energetic shift in the front lines for Cottesloe. Tobias Hoskins and Kieran Stringer never relented in their efforts in both attack and defence. But for this writer, Marcel Brache put in an extremely positive performance and was our best player. He made dozens of tackles and made sure Nedlands never bothered to attempt any width in their play and his ball carrying constantly brought Cottesloe over the advantage line. He even scored Cottesloe’s only try. This week the lads face Joondalup at the nest in a must win match. The good news is several of our key men will return from injury and the team remain confident of victory.