Comeback queen Nakia Davis-Welsh has helped the Indigenous All Stars women gain sweet revenge with a 10-4 win over the Maori on the Gold Coast on Saturday.
Winger Davis-Welsh burst back on to the big stage by capping an impressive display with the match-winning try in the 47th minute as the Indigenous women bounced back from last year's 8-4 All Stars defeat.
A member of the Jillaroos' 2017 World Cup winning team, Davis-Welsh appears back in top form after missing a season of footy following the birth of her first child in 2019.
"The way she has come back from giving birth, to put in a performance like that, I am pretty proud of her," Indigenous women's coach Ben Jeffries said.
"It is probably to be expected because of her experience but to do that on the big stage straight away, it's very well played."
Davis-Welsh - a Sydney Roosters NRLW contracted player - showed all her experience to help the Indigenous women hit back from a disastrous start.
The Maori came out swinging, with centre Kerehitina Matua bulldozing her way through five defenders to open the scoring in just the second minute.
However, scores were level at 4-4 by halftime after a clever Davis-Welsh offload set up centre Stephanie Mooka's 12th minute try.
Davis-Welsh also proved invaluable at the defensive end, pulling off a stunning try-saving 39th minute tackle to deny Kiana Takairangi.
Fittingly Davis-Welsh then had the final say in the nail-biter.
With 13 minutes left, captain Tallisha Harden brilliantly gathered a Jenni-Sue Hoepper bomb and set up a flying Davis-Welsh to crash over and ice the result.
Indigenous backrower Shaylee Bent - fresh from chiming into the Dragons' NRL Nines triumph in Perth - and Maori pivot Raecene McGregor were also outstanding.
Meanwhile, Jeffries said Dragons star Shakiah Tungai had suffered a "minor" shoulder injury after the lively Indigenous fullback was forced off the field in the second half following a hit from Maori prop Harata Butler.
Maori fullback Botille Vette-Welsh was placed on report for a shoulder charge on centre Rhiannon Revell-Blair.
Australian Associated Press