ANITA Cryer played a crucial hand as Joe Maguires Waratahs got their vengeance on Telstra Store Olympians and clinched an historic Tamworth women’s first grade competition grand final berth on Sunday.
Cryer scored all three of Waratahs’ goals as they beat Olympians 3-1.
It secured Waratahs their first ever appearance in the first grade decider, and was extra sweet after Olympians had eliminated them from the finals last year.
Waratahs coach Greg Doolan was delighted with the result but didn’t feel it was a “particularly good game”.
“It was quite scrappy. There were plenty of turnovers,” he said.
They probably just did the basics better than Olympians did, and took their chances better.
“We took a high percentage of the opportunities we had,” he said.
Most of the opportunities for both sides, he said, came from turnovers.
They were up 2-nil but Olympians struck on half-time through Alice Arnott to make it 2-1 at the break.
Cryer then put them back out to two goals midway through the second half, catching a deflection on a short corner.
Doolan had said before the game they had to close down Olympians’ midfield, and he thought they did that pretty well, although the midfield was structured a bit differently and played a bit differently to what he was expecting.
He said they looked to distribute more rather than trying to be “damaging and creative”, and that probably played into their hands a bit.
“Defensively we were very good,” Doolan said.
“Our back group were good.”
Katrina Rekunow did a great job on Alice Arnott.
She played 68 of the 70 minutes and ran with her.
It was one of those days for Olympians, and a disappointing way to go out, coach Andrew Farmilo said
“We didn’t play well,” Farmilo said.
Things just didn’t work, especially in attack.
“We just missed the stick,” he said.
“We couldn’t find the
They also missed having a big bench in the heat. While everyone tried hard, they were “just too tired” and the second efforts weren’t there.
The first half was worse than the second.
“We were really bad in the first half,” Farmilo said.
They made too many turnovers.
“We were trying to get rid of the ball too quickly,” he said.
“We just gave them so many opportunities to counter attack.”
They did come out better in the second half.
“The first 15 of the second half we started to look really good and started to control the ball,” Farmilo said.
“But once that goal didn’t come we started to panic again.”
Waratahs didn’t give them a lot of space to work with either.
“They marked well – didn’t give anyone any space,” Farmilo said.
It could have been worse if not for Libby Grills. She made some really crucial saves.