Wanneroo Wiped Out By Cottesloe

Cottesloe ensured a home semi final for themselves against West Scarborough in a couple of weeks with a destructive performance versus Wanneroo on a score of 64 points to 19. The Roodogs found themselves outgunned, outmuscled, out-thought, out-kicked and out-ran as they were swept away in the blue tide.

The first half began with Cottesloe showing ambition in attack by looking to go wide after only a couple of hit-ups. It paid dividends straight away as Nick Jooste created an overlap in the Wanneroo 22 which sent Tamba Lebbie powering over for the first try of the game. From the kick off, Cottesloe were able to force their way back into Wanneroo territory and this time Nick Jooste took the line on himself and used a glorious switch to send Ben Meredith through under the posts. Gafa S’ua was the next cab off the rank as no more than five minutes after the last score, Cottesloe found themselves with a lineout ten metres out. Gafa called the famous “Tony Woodcock” move from the New Zealand world cup final in 2011, upon himself, and the Wanneroo lineout parted like the Red Sea to allow him to stroll in at his leisure. With only fifteen minutes gone, Wanneroo were already in tatters, but with so many players playing for places in finals, Cottesloe actually went up a gear. The next scorer was Ali Haining as a wonderful break from Alec Fontalvo and an even better offload from the Queenslander allowed Ali Haining to roll under the sticks untouched. Five minutes later young Alistair found himself yet again going over after some superb hands from the back row and centres put him through a gap. Astonishingly Mr Haining went over for his third try in a row when Cottesloe went through some quality carries through Lafa Ikenasio and Cohen Masson before Tobias Hoskins executed a switch with Ali who skated in under the posts. The referee at this point had seen enough and blew the half time whistle with the score sitting at 40 points to zero.

Cottesloe picked up where they left off at the beginning of the second period. From a lineout in the middle of the field, Nick Jooste employed a clever wrap move with Sam Parker using Ali Haining as a decoy. The Wanneroo midfield jammed in, understandably considering the damage Alistair had inflicted upon them in the first period, but this just allowed Nick Jooste to coast into space out the back with Ben Meredith and Tamba Lebbie for company. A couple of passes later and Tamba had hosed in for his second try. The next try was actually even better. Ben Meredith received the ball under pressure inside his own 22, he chipped through identifying that there was nobody at home out the back, collected his own kick and released Nick Jooste for the big man to scamper clear. At this point, coaches Westaway, Owen and West elected to roll the full subs bench and a plethora of players were given an opportunity to play for their spot in finals. Cottesloe actually looked a little disrupted at this point as lads got familiar with each other and Wanneroo finally began to show their potential. In fact they successfully managed to grab two quick tries to great consternation from the Cottesloe sideline. Suitably chastened, Cottesloe began to go more direct and got back into the groove very quickly. Gafa S’ua set up the next try for Cottesloe when some Carlos Spencer-esque footwork created a gap and an offload to Nick Jooste allowed Ali Haining to receive yet another try scoring chance and he went in for his fourth. The next try and Cottesloe’s final try was just phenomenal. Ethan Cayless, who was running riot from the back of the scrum at this point showed some tremendous awareness to put Tamba lebbie into space. Tamba beat a couple of despairing tackles before offloading to Simi Verata who sprinted in for his first score of the game. In the last couple of minutes, Ben Grant received a team yellow cards for repeated infringements and Wanneroo managed a desultory try at the end to finish the game. The final score was 64 points to 19.

This was a savage performance from Cottesloe. A truly ruthless running display of attacking temerity. Wanneroo were blown off the park as the damn was bursting everywhere. Every single Cott player on the field looked damaging with ball in hand and our boys possessed to much threat at any given time for the Roodogs to contain. In the forwards the entire front row carried powerfully all day and the scrum was immaculate despite the loss of Kaisa Reidy to injury at training on Thursday. It was particularly pleasing for Lafa Ikenasio who had a hard time at the set piece against Wanneroo last time but gave his man what-for at the weekend and returned the favour. Kieran Stringer and Ben Grant were both totemic at the lineout. Alec Fontalvo goes from strength to strength and this writer doesn’t quite know what he is capable of as he improves exponentially in every game he plays. Cohen Masson inspired fear in the Wanneroo back row while Tobias Hoskins did what he always does, carried it fearlessly into the biggest men they have. Simi Verata was elusive when he went on and Ethan Cayless reminded this writer of a JCB digger with the hands of Lebron James as he ran down the field. This writer has no idea how the coaches are going to select a forward pack for finals, a tough task with the quality this side possesses. In the backs, Tim Parks was smooth and controlled as was Sam Parker who exudes confidence and calm to the young lads around him. Tamba Lebbie was super on the wing and this writer believes that the position suits him far better than 13 as he excelled here. Ben Meredith and Jimmy Blackburn showed touches of class with ball in hand throughout. Now it comes to it, Alistair Haining scored four tries on his first prems game of the year....... four..... just let that sink in, and yet...... this writer just cannot look past Nick Jooste. He was extraterrestrial he was that good. He was like a conductor of an orchestra and absolutely destroyed Wanneroo from the first minute to the last. He is half a Saffa/half Cott native, but all monster and in a game where virtually everybody played well, he was the best.

This week the lads face Uni at the nest in a do or die game for them, but our squad will be fighting like lions to earn a spot in Coach Westaway’s plans for finals,