NPL NSW Women’s Grand Final Preview

CAMPERDOWN, AUSTRALIA - JUNE 03:  Match action during the Women's National Premier Leagues NSW Round 13 match between Sydney University SFC and Macarthur Rams at Sydney Uni Football Ground on June 3, 2018 in Camperdown, Australia. #NPLNSW @NPLNSW  #WNPL  (Photo by Jeremy Ng/ for Football NSW)

We are down to the final two in the elite National Premier Leagues NSW Women’s competition as the Macarthur Rams and Sydney University lock horns on Sunday afternoon at Valentine Sports Park.

It’s been a long and arduous season for both Macarthur and Uni and it all comes down to the big dance on Sunday afternoon at Football NSW headquarters.

The ‘students’ deservedly won the Premiership after leading the competition for a significant part of it.

With head coach Alex Epakis in charge of his first season at the club, he has had some amazing results and completing the double in his debut campaign would be something special.

Cortnee Vine leads this team from the front and her prowess in front of goal is a key factor to Uni’s success. Added to that the late forward runs of Nikki Flannery and the Rams defence will need to be at their best.

Tori Tumeth has been another standout for Uni this season but it was stand in keeper Sophie Magus that grabbed the headlines last time out and another performance like that will put Uni closer to the title.

Littered with talent, Uni will also have the likes of Rachael Soutar, Bianca Galic, Taren King and Charlotte Mclean to look towards in spearheading their title challenge.

Last week Uni booked their place in the final in what was one of the best footballing displays put on by two teams this season.

The team with a ‘hoodoo’ they can’t shake. The Macarthur Rams.

First it was the Football NSW Institute in 2014, then Uni in 2015 and Manly United last season.

Three finals, three losses.

Interestingly, all three times they came into the grand final as the premiers, not this time though.

The wily eyed Norm Boardman has an experienced side at his disposal and will be expecting his team to go all the way.

Kylie Ledbrook, fresh from signing a W-League deal with the Western Sydney Wanderers, and Teresa Polias are arguably the team’s biggest stars with of course well-known goal-poacher Leena Khamis who also snapped up a Western Sydney Wanderers contract.

Georgia Yeoman-Dale is another the Uni defence will need to watch with the attacker in red hot form this season while the experienced Renee Rollason will look towards commanding the Rams to victory.

Caitlin Campbell has also had solid year and will be tough to break come Sunday while the zippy Rosaria Galea will need be watched closely as her speed can turn any game on its head.

The two drew twice in the regular season with Macarthur coming away with a one-goal victory only two weeks ago in the semi-final.

It will be a fine game between the two best teams in the competition.

Probable Line-Ups:

Macarthur Rams: Shamiran Khamis, Caitlin Campbell, Rosaria Galea, Leena Khamis, Kylie Ledbrook, Teresa Polias, Lauren Ralston, Renee Rollason, Georgia Yeoman-Dale, Tiffany Patterson, Kirrilee Cameron

Sydney University: Nikoletta Flannery, Taren King, Sophie Magus, Annabel Martin, Charlotte Mclean, Julie-Ann Russell, Rachael Soutar, Tori Tumeth, Cortnee Vine, Clare Wheeler

Don’t forget, those of you that cannot make this huge clash, the game will be live streamed via Football NSW on the NPL NSW Facebook page from 5:45pm with expert commentary from Adam Santarossa and Tony Tannous calling the match.

The day will kick off at 9am as the Under 14’s will see the FNSW Institute battle Manly United while in the Under 15’s the Institute again will be involved, this time taking on the Blacktown Spartans at 10:45.

Under 17’s will feature Manly United taking on Sydney University at 12:45pm and before the big finale, the Reserve Grade will showcase NWS Koalas taking on the Blacktown Spartans at 2:45pm.

Click here to view the NPL NSW Women’s Grand Final Match Day Program