Dobek try results in rare Australia defeat

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The Independent Online

A try eight minutes from time by captain Brenda Dobek gave Great Britain and Ireland's women the sort of result their male counterparts would love to have to their credit against the Australians.

A try eight minutes from time by captain Brenda Dobek gave Great Britain and Ireland's women the sort of result their male counterparts would love to have to their credit against the Australians.

Anyone disillusioned by one-sided scorelines and effortless Australian domination in the men's World Cup would find an antidote in the female equivalent. Because for the third time in three matches the Women's World Series produced a compelling and close contest.

If this match had looked at one stage like falling into the familiar pattern of the men's game, with Great Britain doing so well for so long but finally succumbing to the superior power of the Australians, then Dobek - who managed to wriggle her way through the Australian defence to score before taking further advantage by kicking the goal - changed that well-worn script.

The crowd at Dewsbury - the third venue of the day as the organisers looked for a playable ground somewhere in the north of England - saw the hosts slug it out successfully in the first half. They took the lead through tries from arguably their outstanding player, Jane Banks, and from Natalie Gilmour, the sister of Lee Gilmour, who has recently been signed by Bradford from Wigan.

Running down the slope in the second half, however, the Australians gathered some momentum and drew level with tries from Caryl Jarrett and their captain, Karyn Murphy. When Karen Shaw put them in the lead by converting the second of those tries, few would have bet against the old story being re-enacted. Thanks to Dobek's late try, it was not, but under the arcane rules of the three-team tournament, the Australians could still come back to haunt Britain and New Zealand in the tournament's play-offs.

GREAT BRITAIN AND IRELAND: Hewson; Taylor, Walsh, Gilmour, Titterington; Dobek, Sharnley; Tunnicliffe, Land, McIntosh, Banks, Stevens, Milburn. Substitutes: Robinson, Roper, Rice, Cochrane.

AUSTRALIA: O'Neill; Thompson, Shaw, Anderson, O'Doherty; Murphy, Dyer; Ryan, Stuart, Fanning, Norris, White, Gale. Substitutes: Jarrett, Mullder, Merritt, Snowling.

Referee: B Taylor (England).

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