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Junior Reps 2024: Semi-finals wrap

A jam-packed Junior Reps Semi-final day had some strong performances along with a few upset wins as 16 teams battled it out to qualify for next week’s Grand Final on Saturday 27 April.

Here’s the wrap-up of all the action from Henson Park and Leichhardt Oval.

UNE Harold Matthews Cup:

The miracle run of the Under-17s Warriors continued on Saturday when they came up against ladder-leaders the Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs, beating their previously undefeated opposition 12-10.

The driving rain presented a tight-contest, with the sixth-placed Warriors building on momentum from last week’s efforts by scoring early through winger Karius Booth. That was soon followed by lock Lennox Tuiloma finding the line, and as Booth converted the Warriors led 10-0 after 13 minutes.

Bulldogs No.7 Matthew Barakat showed his skill to score before halftime to trail 10-4.

Early in the second half Booth extended the Warriors’ margin to 12-4 with a penalty goal from 30 metres, but despite Bulldogs’ Hassan Rabaa scoring in the final minutes of the game it wasn’t enough to turn around the 12-10 score-line.

The other Semi-final at Leichhardt Oval between the Western Suburbs Magpies and Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks was another low-scoring clash, with the Magpies leading 8-0 at the half from a Tyson Walker try and a pair of successful penalty goals by centre Heamasi Makasini. Sharks back-rower Kade Garner hit back with a try at 10 minutes remaining, however the unbeaten Magpies held on for an 8-6 win.

Click here for more at the Harold Matthews Cup Match Centre.

UNE SG Ball Cup:

The 12.30pm clash saw another unbeaten side bow out the finals as the Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs survived a late scare to beat the Sydney Roosters 28-22.

After starting strongly the Bulldogs had a 16-6 halftime lead, but it was five-eighth Alex Conti who dragged his team to victory with two brilliant solo efforts to score in the 33rd and 53rd minutes, before setting up centre Sosaia Kaufusi to all but seal the result.

The Roosters stormed down the left edge for two late four-pointers through Tyreece Tait and Cooper Toy, yet there was simply too little time to overcome the deficit.

The game to round out Junior Reps Semi-final day featured St George Dragons taking on the Newcastle Knights for a chance to face the Bulldogs, and it was the Dragons who had control of the match from start to finish on the way to a 36-4 victory.

Winger Jesse Williams finished with a hat-trick of tries, as captain and five-eighth Shadi Hammoud scored five goals and a four-pointer of his own.

Click here for more at the SG Ball Cup Match Centre.

Westpac Lisa Fiaola Cup:

The early matchup began with the Wests Tigers trailing 4-0 before running away with a 32-14 win over the second-placed Illawarra Steelers.

Tries from fullback Rhiannon Bonner, hooker Paige Attard and back-rower Lucyannah Luamanu-Leiataua gave the Tigers a 16-6 lead at the main break, before scoring four more unanswered tries in the second half to put the result beyond doubt.

The later game between Canterbury-Bankstown and Newcastle ended with the Bulldogs extending their undefeated streak to nine matches, coming away with a 22-4 win.

Click here for more at the Lisa Fiaola Cup Match Centre.

Westpac Tarsha Gale Cup:

In the first Semi-final the Illawarra Steelers kept their unbeaten run going with a 26-4 win over Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks.

After earning top spot and earning the week off, the Steelers proved yet again why they had the competition’s best attack throughout the regular season (344 points scored) – highlighted on this occasion with a hat-trick for centre Mia-Rose Walsh.

The second semi-final was another instalment of Bulldogs against Knights following the Lisa Fiaola Cup match, but this time the Knights turned the tables with a 28-0 shutout to book their place in next week’s decider.

Winger Lilly McNamara had 10 points for the match after a try and four from five off the boot, while second-rower Evah McEwen bagged a double.

Click here for more at the Tarsha Gale Cup Match Centre.

Acknowledgement of Country

Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs respect and honour the Darug and Eora nations, who are the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.