Malta International Airport Ladies Tens Cup

The Malta ladies put an entertaining and highly contested exhibition of running rugby, showing excellent passing and teamwork skills.

20 March 2011, 12:00am
By Mike Turner

VALLETTA LIONS - 29
OVERSEAS - 5


 Despite the scores Overseas gave Valletta a close contest, showing great improvement.

Overseas strong pack won ground with close drives but soon Valletta were attacking and Bondin scored with a long run in from half way.

Valletta continued to attack, but the Overseas tackling was low and hard, until Farrugia ran weaved through three defenders to score the second, converted by Gauci.

Overseas Mooney defended well and put in several good positional kicks. A huge drive by the Overseas pack gained ground and Valletta were flustered into poor tackling technique, and the powerful Cassar scored for Overseas. Valletta launched several attacks, but the Overseas cover tackling, especially Vella-Bonnicci, kept them out to end with a lead of 12-5 at half time.

Overseas won plenty of ball in the second half but all too often chose to run on the blind side when there were plenty of players wide, Fenech-Soler often being the guilty party.

Gauci made a good break from deep and interpassed with Borg before the speedy Vella Bonnicci closed the attack down.

Valletta attacked again but although they had the right ideas, they were too sloppy in passing and thinking. However, Gauci was able to power way over after a somewhat confused attacking drive.

Mooney was kicking well for Overseas until Gauci seized a dropped ball and, straightening her line with a swerve, cut through to score under the posts, which she converted.

Finally Farrugia scored the best try of the match, after fast interpassing and an incisive break.

KAVALLIERI - 29
ALLIGATORS -  7


 Another excellent match in which Alligators showed huge improvement under their new coach, Mr. Twigg, and the score did not really illustrate the close fought struggle.

Kavallieri also fielded a bran new convert from Handball, Maria Spiteri and she showed huge promise in her angled running and timing, to open the scoring with a try, which she repeated after a long period of territorial pressure.

However the Gators defence and covering was holding out Kavallieri until Psaila scored and Cassar converted to gain a half time lead of 17-0.

Kavallieri extended their lead with a penalty try for a high tackle, converted by Cassar, but then seemed to lose their pattern as Gators raised their game to start to rattle them. The referee made them step back 10 metres no less than three times for not retreating. Kavallieri Borg made a superb break to beyond half way but was caught by Pace.  Jones lost her head after another penalty and was yellow carded for not retreating before tackling and suddenly Gators were in with a chance, as they drove forward. Their passing was too laboured and slow to breach the cover defence but big Brenda Agius burrowed over for a Gators try converted by Casha, after Psaila had been yellow carded for Kavallieri.

Both sides raised their pace again and in a spirited encounter Gators Sammut high tackled for a yellow card sin bin. Cassar sealed the game for Kavallieri with a beautifully timed change of pace to fool the defence and score.

 All in all this was a fine exhibition of improving rugby and the Malta Ladies give a fine example of teamwork for the MIA Ten a Side Competition.