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Country has scored a 34-22 victory over Jason Clark’s City outfit in the annual City v Country match, played this year in Wagga Wagga.

A hat-trick to City’s Blake Austin wasn’t enough to lift the city-slickers, with Country notching up six tries to City’s four.

City halfback, Austin kicked off the scoring in a big way when he grabbed a double inside the first 11 minutes of the match – his first a screamer that saw Andrew Fifita desperately bat back a ball from over the touch-line back inside to Austin to score.

Austin’s second came from long-range, with the Canberra product backing up a City break to race in under the sticks. Matt Moylan added the extras from right in front to give City a 10-0 lead.

But when Country got their first meaningful use of the ball, the tide turned with James McManus and Akuila Uate both grabbing tries. It would ultimately be the goal-kicking of James Maloney that would send Country to the break with a 12-10 lead.

On the resumption, Country picked up where they left off by gaining momentum inside the first two minutes of the half. A change of direction and off-load from Josh Jackson to David Mead saw the latter crash over the line. Maloney added the extras to make it 18-10.

Twenty minutes from full-time, Tariq Sims showed brilliant footwork from short range to go over the try-line despite an attempted kick from Josh Reynolds – the City five-eighth being placed on report for the incident. Maloney made no mistake to take Country’s lead out to 24-10.

City hit-back four minutes later when Jason Clark opted to pass out the back-line instead of take a hit-up resulting in James Tedesco racing over in the corner.  Matt Moylan’s conversion attempt hit the upright before going between the sticks to make it 24-16.

Blake Austin wasn’t done scoring though, with the Raider taking the opportunity to notch up a hat-trick after some great lead-up work from his City teammates. Moylan added the extras again to make it a two point ball-game at 24-22 with 15 minutes remaining.

But two late tries to Jack Wighton and and Jarod Croker in the final 10 minutes snuffed out a potential City fightback – Country running out 34-22 victors.

 

Country 34 (James McManus, Akuila Uate, David Mead, Tariq Sims, Jack Wighton, Jarod Croker, tries; James Maloney 5 goals)

Defeated

City 22 (Blake Austin 3, James Tedesco, tries; Matt Moylan 3 goals)

Acknowledgement of Country

South Sydney Rabbitohs respect and honour the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.

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