Whatever happens in the final on Friday, 2022 has been a historic season for Women's rugby at Marist St Pats.
The core of the team have been involved since Women's rugby restarted at Marist St Pats in 2016. This saw a number of players recognised with blazers for 50 Premier games this season; achievements that shouldn't be underestimated given the number of games each season is fewer due to the number of clubs competing.
We had the sense that this season would be special from the first game of the season when the team beat perennial champions Northern United by 41-5. From there the team only lost two games of the 11 played, to reigning champions Oriental-Rongotai.
Captain Jaydah Timu attributes the success to the culture the team has built. 'At the beginning of every season our head coach Ryan Setefano will organise a cultural night. It creates a “sister-hood” environment for new and returning players, and I believe this has played a huge part of our success this season.'
That success culminated in another historic victory, over Oriental-Rongotai in the semi final last weekend at Evans Bay Park, booking their place in this Friday's final against Northern United. This is the first time the team has contested the division one Tia Paasi Memorial Cup Final - having won division two in 2019.
Despite the historic nature of the game Jaydah says 'not much will change in our preparation this weekend. We will be treating this as another game of footy - just with a little more nerves and excitement.'
We're encouraging all Marist St Pats supporters to come and support the team this weekend. If you haven't been to one of the team's games Jaydah says you can expect a lot of contact and noise. 'Our team consists of over 22 players so unfortunately not everyone will get the chance to play in the final. The 22 players that get named for this Fridays match will be a player to watch.'