The South Sydney Rabbitohs have bounced back from last week’s defeat to storm into the Harvey Norman NSW Women’s Premiership Grand Final, beating Cabramatta 26-12 at Leichhardt Oval.
A hat trick to fullback Nakia Davis-Welsh and a double to winger Taleena Simon did the damage for the Red and Green as they romped past their opponents brushing off last week’s defeat.
It was a lightning start from the Rabbitohs women as they got on the board early through Davis-Welsh.
A short inside ball from five-eighth Lavina O’Mealey split the Cabramatta defence to allow Davis-Welsh an easy passage way to the line as she scored next to the posts in the 5th minute.
Halfback Maddie Studdon nailed the easy conversion to give Souths an early 6-0 lead.
However, Cabramatta bounced back almost immediately through their number 1 Botille Vette-Welsh, who sped past the Rabbitohs defence to score in the corner.
The conversion was unsuccessful with the score now reading 6-4.
The majority of the second half was an arm wrestle with either side being unable to break through.
Taleena Simon went close in the corner with an acrobatic finish but was deemed to have stepped out of the field of play before planting the ball down.
However, the winger wouldn’t be denied as she scored shortly after in the 25th minute running on to a lovely short ball from Studdon.
The halfback then slotted the the conversion to extend Souths’ lead to 12-4.
The Red and Green then got themselves even further in front on the next set, as Davis-Welsh once again put on her dancing shoes and weaved her way through traffic to score right on half-time.
Studdon was once again sharp with the boot to give the Rabbitohs an 18-4 lead at the break.
The late first half flurry clearly had a big impact on the game, with the Rabbitohs coming out flying in the second half.
Taleena Simon grabbed her double shortly after kick off to stretch her side’s lead out to 22-4.
Moments later, Davis-Welsh had her hat trick as she was once again too quick for an exposed Cabramatta defence.
Studdon could quite convert but the Red and Green now had a big 26-4 lead in the just the 37 minute.
To Cabramatta’s credit, they never gave up and were rewarded with two late tries back-to-back.
Up first was Victoria Latu, who powered her way over from close range to reduce the deficit to 26-8.
She was then followed by centre Aaliyah Fasavalu-fa’amausili, who crossed over in the corner.
Both conversion were unsuccessful.
Both sides continued to give it their all for the remaining few minutes of the match to make for entertaining viewing for the crowd.
However, in the end, the Rabbitohs were too strong and held out the late Cabramatta flurry to book their place in the Grand Final next week and ANZ Stadium .