Unbeaten Gloucester-Hartpury secure national final spot in debut season

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Gloucester-Hartpury women’s team are heading into a national cup final in their debut season after maintaining their unbeaten streak with a 24-0 semi-final win over Teddington Antlers at Kingsholm, ending their opponents’ own unbeaten run in the process.

The newly-formed side produced a clinical second-half display after edging a scrappy first half in the Women’s National Junior Cup to set up a final showdown against Kendal Ladies at Lichfield RFC.

The teams went in scoreless at the break after Gloucester-Hartpury were unable to break down a resolute Teddington defence but Susie Appleby’s side made the most of their opponents being reduced to 14 early in the second half through a yellow card.

A quick score after the break by captain Stacey Hardy had put the home side 7-0 up before Emma Mundy added a penalty following the Teddington yellow card.

Centre Jade Shekells’ converted try gave Gloucester-Hartpury a 17-point advantage before debutant Daisy Fahey sealed the victory with a late try, also converted by Mundy.

“Teddington defended magnificently so we had to show real character to grind out the win,” said Gloucester-Hartpury head coach Susie Appleby.

“It was a scrappy first half and although we made a lot of good breaks, we were unable to capitalise due to too many errors but we came out fighting in the second half and showed our ability throughout the team.

“There were some great individual performances but it was all about the team achievement and it’s just an amazing feeling to know we’re in a cup final.

“We’ve only played a handful of games in what is our first season and to think where we started with only a small number of players last year, we’ve come a long way and we can’t wait for the final.”

Appleby’s side will face RFUW NC North 1/2 West leaders, Kendal Ladies, in the final on April 11th after they overcame Bletchley 15-5 in the other semi-final.

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