Malta Female Rugby National team beat Switzerland

Tuesday, February 26, 2013, 0:56

Both teams started brightly, testing each other’s defences   The Swiss were the first to crack, when they lost possession from a scrum, and Rodianne Bugeja took advantage to score, and  Amanda Cassar converted.

The Barbarians struck back immediately after the re-start, when they broke upfield.  The right wing was hauled down short of the line, but they set up another attack and shipped the ball quickly along the line to their star player Carole Casparis, who duly delivered the points. The conversion was missed, which was to prove crucial later in the game.  Malta then suffered a blow when they lost their influential player Lorna Mifsud with a knee injury.  She was replaced by Sairita Cassar, and shortly afterwards, the Swiss ran in their second try after Malta lost possession in the breakdown and Christa Hermann powered over to score.  Again, the Swiss missed the conversion, but held a slender three – point lead. This only lasted a few minutes, as Amanda Cassar found some space down the left after clever interplay between Dorin Jager and Marilyn Grech, and ran in unopposed.  Malta extended their lead just before half time, after Casparis uncharacteristically got caught in possession five metres from her own line and lost the ball.  Jager cut in towards the posts before releasing the ball to Syreeta Cassar, who scrambled over to touch down from short range.

After the break, Malta resumed 21-10 ahead and playing into the wind, which made it difficult for them to break out of their own half.  Their defence was being stretched in open play, and eventually the Swiss got the overlap they were looking for when Grech drifted out of position, and Hermann  sprinted down the right wing to notch up her second try.

A sustained period of pressure by the Swiss kept the Maltese ladies on the back foot, and Amanda Cassar needed to put in a try – saving tackle to prevent the Barbarians drawing level.  Malta’s one area of dominance was in the set piece,, where their extra power saw the Swiss lose every scrum on their own put – in.  This factor, coupled with the tiring Swiss team spilling the ball in the final pass when the line beckoned, saw Malta hold on to win a thrilling encounter 21 – 15, and leaving the Swiss to rue the three missed conversions.

 

Player of the match – Amanda Cassar

 





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