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Warringah Rugby Club
Aug 30 2020

It appears that you cannot kill Southern Districts.

At least that’s what Warringah Rats must have thought as the boys from the Shire came again and again, and again, to snatch a stunning victory at Rat Park.

Alex O'Dell heads south. Pic: Rising Sun Photography

Each time the Rats took a lead, Souths pegged it back.

Even when Warringah pegged back Souths' lead and believed they surely had it won after a cracking try by fullback Ben Marr, Souths kept coming.

Playing. Running. Competing

And winning.

With five seconds on the clock.

Seb Wileman on the surge. Pic: Rising Sun Photography

Indeed Warringah’s celebrations had barely subsided when Souths scored in the south-eastern corner to win a pulsating, open, 12-try affair 39-38 on a beautiful Saturday afternoon.

Fair old game.

It was 19-3 after 20 minutes to Warringah. Then it was 19-10. Then 19-17.

Try-time: Tyson Davis. Pic: Rising Sun Photography

Crowd favourite Sam Ward, back in his preferred No.8, sea-gulled like good back-rowers do and scored in the corner in front of the Hillbilllies, who roared his name. “Waaaarddiiiiieee”.

Ward gave them the thumbs up; fitting on Mental Health Round.

But Souths, as you may have deduced, would not go away.

Tom Halse converts. Pic: Rising Sun Photography

“They’re fit these blokes,” said my mate Steve, up from Engadine. “There’s no superstars among them. But they'll go all day.”

Souths illustrated his point with a try. Then another one. Somehow they led by 10.

The footy was physical, the counter-rucking fierce. Rats attacked the northern end, urged on by old boys in the stand. Alas: Knock-on. Then a penalty. Souths' backs came from everywhere to rally their pigs. The Shire boys were cock-a-hoop.

Yet there’s steel in these Warringah Rats, too. And guile.

Rory Suttor hits it up, Mungo Mason in support. Pic: Rising Sun Photography

Josh Holmes bunted a kick over the D-line that breakaway Mungo Mason, seeming to channel a half-forward flanker from Australian rules, got out ahead of everyone else to catch, before rumbling over for try adjacent the posts.

“How’d he get there that quick?” Steve mused.

“He’s a No.7,” replied my mate Henry. “We’re skilled in the dark arts.”

Big D on Ben Woollett. Pic: Rising Sun Photography.

Then Marr broke free. He handled twice in a fine movement that resulted in a cracking try that was roared home by Rats fans on both sides of the park.

There were two minutes left. Surely – they had it.

But of course they did not.

And Souths won a huge victory.


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Warringah Rugby Club
Consisting of four grades, a strong Colts program and an outstanding, high-achieving Women’s 15 side we are a thriving and engaged Rugby Club. Over the years our Club has been proudly and prominently represented at both national and international level. We believe that our Sponsors, Supporters and Players are our finest assets. They are characterised by qualities such as loyalty, commitment and generosity which make the strong foundation of our ‘family’. It’s this “family” that you’ll see and hear down at Rat Park on a Saturday cheering on every game and every grade, socialising afterwards in victory and in defeat. It’s this “family” that comes rain, hail or shine which makes things down here all the more special. Our side lines are laced with the finest of physicians and management and our grand stand filled with the most passionate of supporters. We’re a rugby club whose history spans more than 50 years and has shaped and defined the core of who we are. We are rich in culture, passion, great sportsmanship and of course a deep love for the game of Rugby. We're known as “The Rats” and the name holds significant value for us. After experiencing several difficult years with many humiliating defeats the players were reminded by Doug Leslie Snr - a Rat of Tobruk - that to give up in the face of adversity is never an option. The tradition of the Rats of Tobruk, of bonding together and making commitments in the true spirit of mateship should always be remembered. From that time on the Club became known as the Green Rats and our long held friendship with the Rats of Tobruk Veterans Association and their legacy is honoured by a memorial on the hill at the southern end of ‘Rat Park’.
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