Exiles pressed for large periods of the game but on balance Vänersborg perhaps just deserved to win. Their win was partly due to Minonna Nunstedt running away for three tries but they were just a little bit sharper in the last 20 minutes as Exiles tried everything to get on level terms.
Exiles started by pressing Vänersborg but completely against the run of play Winonna intercepted on her own 22 and ran away to score after 5 minutes. Exiles continued to press but Vänersborg held firm. With a few minutes to go in the first half they got over the half way line again and once again Minonna sprinted. The half ended with Exiles five yards out but a scoring pass was dropped, and the scoreboard still showed 10 – 0 to the visitors.
Exiles attacked again after the break and finally Jenny Ohlin made a break and timed her pass beautifully for Micaela to score. But then Vänersborg were starting to attack more and Exiles had to defend desperately. Something had finally to give and once again it was Minonna who found a gap on 50″ and ran strongly from 30 m. This one was converted and with half-an-hour to go Exiles were down 17 – 5. They fought valiantly and on 60″ reduced it to 17 – 10 after a pushover try by Emilie.
But that´s as far as it got. Vänersborg´s scrum was being pushed around for the first hour but stabilised thereafter and they took I think two against the head as well as two Exiles´ lineouts. You can´t play catch-up and give away possession four times. In addition they were giving away penalties for offside and playing the ball on the ground. In general the Vänersborg backs were passing more slickly and clearing the ball better from the rucks. Exiles drove mauls forward time after time but couldn´t break the Vänersborg defence. The last 7 – 8 minutes were all Exiles, but the match ended with Exiles stuck once again a few meters out.
It´s easy to envisage a scenario where Exiles could/should have won the game. But I think the consensus must be that Vänersborg just deserved a narrow win.
Added afterwards by Tess Mabon
1) Pictures by Tomas Berg
2) the picture from Vänersborgs RK´s Instagram: