Gloucester-Hartpury took control of the game in the first half, with Kelsey Jones, Rachel Lund, and Sarah Beckett crossing the try line to establish a 17-7 lead at halftime. Emily Tuttosi responded for Exeter with a try of her own.
The momentum continued in Gloucester’s favor in the second half, as a penalty try widened the gap after Claudia MacDonald deliberately knocked the ball away. Liv McGoverne’s try offered a glimmer of hope for Exeter, but Lisa Neumann’s score sealed the victory for Gloucester at the temporarily renamed ‘Queensholm’ Stadium.
Although Ebony Jeffries scored a late consolation try for Exeter, it was Gloucester-Hartpury who celebrated their well-deserved victory at the final whistle. The match, played by two teams outside of London, drew a record crowd of 9,668, further adding to the spectacle.
Gloucester-Hartpury’s success was a testament to their resilience throughout the season, having finished at the top of the league in the regular season. The team donated their match fees to support the motor neurone disease campaign of former lock Ed Slater, exemplifying their admirable spirit both on and off the field.
Gloucester-Hartpury wasted no time in asserting their dominance, as Kelsey Jones powered through from a driving maul to score the opening try just five minutes into the match. Co-captain Natasha Hunt, who played a pivotal role at scrum-half, came close to adding another try, but was denied by a brilliant tackle from Gabby Cantorna.
Sarah Beckett received a yellow card for a forceful tackle on Hope Rogers, which could have resulted in a red card. However, the Chiefs failed to capitalize on the advantage immediately, and Gloucester-Hartpury reclaimed the lead through Rachel Lund’s try.
Beckett redeemed herself before halftime by breaking through two Exeter defenders to score, extending Gloucester-Hartpury’s lead further.
The second half saw Gloucester-Hartpury maintain their intensity, resulting in a penalty try when MacDonald obstructed Gloucester’s attempt at scoring from a cross-field kick. Lund’s yellow card for a mistimed tackle temporarily evened the player count.
Exeter fought back with a well-executed move, leading to McGoverne’s try. However, a penalty by Sing restored Gloucester-Hartpury’s composure. Exeter’s Kate Zackary was sin-binned as the fourth player, and the Chiefs defended fiercely to prevent Tatyana Heard from scoring in the corner despite cramping.
As the Exeter defense tired, replacement player Lisa Neumann secured the victory for Gloucester-Hartpury with their fifth try. The team celebrated their hard-earned triumph, capping off an outstanding season.
Gloucester-Hartpury head coach Sean Lynn praised the character and determination of his players, particularly highlighting the performances of Sarah Beckett and Mo Hunt, who showcased their abilities despite initial disappointment over missing out on the England World Cup selection.
Exeter head coach Susie Appleby expressed her disappointment with her team’s performance but acknowledged the opportunity for growth and learning from the experience.
This Premier 15s final added another chapter to the competition’s history, which has seen various teams battle for supremacy in previous seasons. The match exemplified the passion and competitiveness of women’s rugby, captivating fans and leaving them eagerly awaiting future showdowns.
Gloucester-Hartpury: Sing; Rugman, Lund, Heard, Venner; George, Hunt (co-capt); Muir, Kelsey Jones, Delgado, Monaghan, Aldcroft (co-capt), Matthews, Lewis, Beckett.
Replacements: Powell, Buggy, Tuipulotu, Learned, Neve Jones, Blackburn, Bridger, Neumann.
Exeter: Doidge; Sinclair, Zackary, Cantorna, MacDonald; McGoverne, Robinson; Rogers, Tuttosi, Menin, Fryday, Leitch (capt), McMahon, Allen, Johnson.
Replacements: Moloney, Turani, Jacoby, Fleming, Jeffries, McDonald, Wilkins, Buchanan.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Premier 15s final
What was the final score of the Premier 15s final between Gloucester-Hartpury and Exeter Chiefs?
Gloucester-Hartpury defeated Exeter Chiefs with a final score of 34-19 in the Premier 15s final.
Who scored the tries for Gloucester-Hartpury in the final?
Kelsey Jones, Rachel Lund, Sarah Beckett, Penalty (Penalty Try), and Lisa Neumann scored the tries for Gloucester-Hartpury.
Did Exeter Chiefs manage to score any tries in the final?
Yes, Exeter Chiefs scored three tries in the final, which were scored by Emily Tuttosi, Liv McGoverne, and Ebony Jeffries.
What was the attendance at the Premier 15s final?
The Premier 15s final drew a record crowd of 9,668 spectators.
Was this the first Premier 15s final played by teams from outside London?
Yes, the final between Gloucester-Hartpury and Exeter Chiefs marked the first time that two teams from outside London competed in the Premier 15s final.
Who was named the player of the match in the final?
The information regarding the player of the match in the final is not provided in the given text.