Australia’s Ruby Nicholas ‘not as scared’ on SVNS Series


Teenager Robbie Nicholas wouldn't look out of place in the HSBC SVNS series. The Australian made her debut on the track at the prestigious tournament held last month in Hong Kong, China, and has continued to impress during a promising start to her career.

Nicholas was not included in Australia's star-studded squad for the Hong Kong Sevens, but Heidi Dennis' ankle injury changed everything. Coach Tim Walsh called the 19-year-old to tell her she would be playing this weekend.

The newcomer had intended to compete in the Shogun 10s before getting the chance to wear the coveted gold jersey on the international stage. It was a dream come true, it seemed, in more ways than one too.

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Not only was Nicholas set to make her debut on one of the biggest stages at SVNS, the Australian was also set to enter the international rugby fray alongside her hero. As Nicholas said rugby.com.au In April, she adored Charlotte Caslake growing up.

While captain Caslake led Australia to victory over SVNS Perth Cup winners Ireland on the opening day, it was Nicholas who had the final say. Nicola scored her first try of the series with a quick effort at the Hong Kong Stadium with time almost ticking down.

Kaitlan Shave, who made her first appearance in the series this season, was seen screaming at the effort and pointing towards the goalposts before running to embrace her teammate. Bella Nasser was not far behind in celebrating this effort.

But this is just the beginning.

Australia missed out on Cup final glory at that event, but had the opportunity to make amends less than a month later. But with Caslake and veteran Sharni Smalley not in the Singapore squad, others like Nicholas have had to step up.

“(Coach Tim) Walsh always stresses to us that he just wants us to do our job and there's really no expectations on us,” Nicholas said. Rugby Pass At Singapore National Stadium.

“He knows he's pushing us into the deep end, so he just wants us to have fun and get some experience, especially before the Olympics because you never know what could happen,” he added.

Nicholas was used as an impact player off the bench during the final regular season event of the campaign. Coach Tim Walsh called on the teenager to come down from the pine tree and Nicholas was inclined to make that happen by making her mark.

The No. 23 scored Australia's final try of the pool stage in a 27-10 win over Brazil and backed that up with two crucial tries against Great Britain later in the first day. Nicholas could have scored a goal himself but “my father would have killed me” if it had not been implemented.

“I've had a few moments where I've gone by myself and it hasn't worked out, so I just wanted to be sure and give it to the girl who knows better on the edge,” she explained with a smile.

Tia Hinds, Bella Nasser and Tegan Levy and the ever-dangerous speed duo of Faith Nathan and Madison Levy were among the other players to shine on Australia's path to the cup final in the first-ever Women's Series event in Singapore.

New Zealand stood in the Aussies' way not only to win their first cup final since December, but it was also a winner-take-all win for the league title with both teams picking up the same number of competition points.

Nicholas came off the bench late in the game and looked to make a difference against an in-form Black Ferns Sevens side that included the likes of Jorja Miller, Portia Woodman-Wickliffe, Risi Pouri-Lane and Michaela Blyde.

But that was not to be the case with the Black Ferns Sevens winning relatively comfortably 31-21.

With the Grand Final in Madrid coming up in just two weeks, as well as the Olympics in Paris in July, there are still plenty of positives for coach Tim Walsh to take from the Singapore experience.

With the Australians also losing stand-in captain Maddison Ashby to a knee injury, as well as youngster Lily Dick, the less experienced members of the squad have stepped up and taken some positive steps forward.

This includes of course Robbie Nicholas.

“I definitely felt more confident this time,” Nicholas explained.

“Playing in my first tournament helped me de-stress… The girls have been really supportive of me getting through it with just the little things.

“I definitely feel more excited to play.

She added: “I can absorb everything because in my first tournament I was familiarizing myself with its details and now I know a little about what I am doing.”

“It's just to enjoy it more. (I'm) not afraid.”

It all comes down to this as the top teams in the SVNS Series are scheduled to battle it out for the overall title in Madrid from May 31 to June 2. Tickets for the final stage of the season can be purchased here.





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