Wollongong's top-grade representative women's outfit will lean on the experience of their big guns as they prepare to have a crack at Vawdon Cup glory on Sunday.
The Devils are gearing up to face Easts in the 2023 women's division one grand final in Canterbury. The Vawdon Cup is a prestigious Sydney metropolitan championship that has been running since 1976.
For Wollongong, this weekend presents a golden chance for their women to end a 13-year title drought.
Cara Zaremski and Rachel Tonegato were part of that title-winning side in 2010, and current captain Lauren Robinson hopes the pair hold the key to more success on Sunday.
"We're feeling a bit nervous, but we're definitely pumped. We've been building this year and we're ready to go," Robinson told the Mercury.
"For a few of us girls, it's their first ever Vawdon Cup grand final. I've been playing myself for seven or eight years and I've never made a Vawdon Cup grand final. A couple of our girls have played touch for as long as some of the younger ones have been alive, so it's good that we've got the likes of Cara and Rachel for their experience across the park. Our young girls are fit and fast, and they're definitely improving each week.
"They're (Easts) going to come out firing and they're a good side across the paddock, but hopefully our game plan will work and we can stick it to them."
Wollongong Touch will be also be represented in the Vawdon Cup's men's division one on Sunday, with the Devils set to meet Parramatta in their grand final.
It's been eight years since the Devils last claimed Cup glory, and club vice-president Tim Robinson said they were ready for the challenge.
"They're another team that has been building over the past few years. Last year they fell short in the div two grand final, they went down in an extra-time drop-off," he said.
"They won the div two State Cup last year and went into div one this year for Vawdon Cup and they've done really well, they've only dropped one game. They've gained some experienced heads in there to help some of the younger guys. The likes of Matt Tope and Brad Lugg have been huge for this team, and they're playing really well.
"They're up against a pretty tough Parramatta side tomorrow. They've won the last couple of div one Vawdon Cup grand finals."
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