The fourth-ranked Fijiana Drua scored 20 unanswered points to stun the previous unbeaten Waratahs in a rematch of last year’s final.
Centre Vana Arei scored a double, including the match-winner in the 69th minute to seal their place in the Final for the second straight year,
The Waratahs looked like they were going to replicate their 31-5 victory from round three when Desiree Miller latched onto the loose ball and scored in the first 17 seconds.
Her fellow winger Maya Stewart then scored one of the tries of the competition, blitzing through the line before stepping the fullback for the hosts’ second try inside five minutes.
The four-time champions dominated the opening quarter, sniffing out any attack from the Drua whilst establishing their dominance at scrum-time.
16-year-old Caitlyn Halse should’ve had their third, unable to collect the pop pass from captain Piper Duck off a Jade Sheridan break. Wallaroo Adiana Talakai was the benefactor of their early set piece dominance, barging over at the back of the rolling maul to extend the lead to 17-0.
However, the defending champions refused to die wondering, dragging the Waratahs into their own controlled chaos style of Rugby to flip the game on his head and dominate the rest of the contest.
World Cup hero Siteri Rasolea carried multiple Waratah defenders over the line for their opener, followed over minutes later by vice-captain Arei to suddenly reduce the margin to five.
Both teams threw shots but couldn’t add any further points until a Drua penalty goal just after the break reduced the margin to two.
The Drua dominated the second half and continued to apply pressure on the Waratahs line, camping inside the 22 for 20 minutes as they threw everything at the minor premiers.
Grace Hamilton came up with two key rips on her own goal line whilst Fi Jones and replacement Katalina Amosa were dynamic at the breakdown.
Halse almost had the answer for the hosts, only to lose it over the line after some great Drua scramble, before a 5 metre line out didn’t go straight in a rare 22 visit.
Finally, the relenting pressure delivered results as Arei dived over for her second in the 69th minute to give Fijiana their first lead of the day.
The Waratahs got the ball back with 10 minutes remaining and searched for the game-winner in the face of an impressive Drua defensive wall.
Georgina Friedrichs gave them one last chance but the defending champions found a way to get the pilfer and seal the win.
FIJIANA DRUA 20 (TRIES: Rasolea, Arei 2; CONS: Tisolo 1/2; PENS: Tisolo 1/1) def NSW WARATAHS 17 (TRIES: Miller, Stewart, Talakai; CONS: Miller 1/3).