DOUBLES to Ammon Matuauto and Giles McMeikan helped Nedlands claim its third straight win of the Premier Grade season, with an authoritative 35-16 win over Cottesloe at Harvey Field on Saturday afternoon.
A back-and-forth affair through the first 60 minutes saw six lead changes, however it was Nedlands’ effort in the last 20 minutes that would double Cottesloe’s points total with two tries in rapid-succession.
Nedlands assistant coach Tom Fearn said despite a slow start, he was happy with his side’s emphatic final 20 minutes.
“A lot of things didn’t go our way in the first 60 minutes,” he said.
“We got it together in the last 20, and (the players) were able to prove what they can do.
“They were creating in the first half, but they weren’t holding on to the ball for long enough. The last 20 minutes of that game is how we want to play.
“We got stronger throughout the match, Cottesloe played a kicking game and our discipline didn’t help.
“We’ve got standards at training, and for us it’s about improving it week-by-week.”
Cottesloe started strong, with Charl Nieuwenhuis opening the scoring with a penalty goal to put the home side up 3-0.
Nedlands responded quickly putting up the first major score of the contest with a strong set of phases allowing the backline to find a two-man overlap on the right wing.
The ball was pushed out to Ammoru Matuauto, who quickly flicked it along to Future Force Foundation member James Verity-Amm who ran across the line uncontested.
Kauri Kudd left the score at 5-3 following a missed conversion attempt.
Sharp-shooting scrumhalf Nieuwenhuis continued his strong form with the boot through the first half, with two penalty shots in quick succession putting the Gulls up 9-5.
An offload by Michael Ruru at midfield set up the Nedlands backline in a position to make a fast break, with an overlap down the left hand wing allowing McMeikan to dive across the line.
The try went unconverted leaving the score at 10-9 heading into halftime.
In the 40th minute Nedlands centre Matuauto was yellow-carded by referee Graham Cooper, ending the first half and setting Cottesloe up with a man advantage to start the second.
Cottesloe came out firing in the second half, using their man advantage to push the ball over the line underneath a pack of bodies.
Nieuwenhuis’s successful kick put Cottesloe up 16-10.
Nedlands slowly began to chip away at Cottesloe’s lead, with Kudd kicking a penalty from 35m out for 16-13.
The visitors continued their attacking display when Kudd broke the line before passing to Matuauto who found McMeikan to complete his double.
The unconverted kick left the score at 18-16
Nedlands’ aggressive play continued with Ruru making a break, and with a quick pass he was able to find Matuauto for his first try of the day.
This was followed moments later by Matuauto’s second try of the contest ; Kudd converted both kick attempts, putting the score at 32-16.
In the closing stages Cottesloe was caught not rolling away at the breakdown, setting up Kudd with a penalty shot to put the final score at 35-16.
In other Premier Grade results; Associates were too powerful for Wanneroo winning 37-7 at Allen Park, Wests Scarborough held on to defeat Joondalup 31-25 at HBF Arena, Kalamunda edged out Perth Bayswater 32-27 at Hartfield Park and Palmyra took the points over UWA winning 18-13.