It still wasn't a walk in the park but the job is done.
I think the biggest change that made the difference was getting the Lvl 25 Statis skill, which I had not trained previously - forgot that I had not trained for last lvl-up
Upgrading Light sabers from 46 to 58 also helped a bit. Timing the interrupt kick better also helped too, and standing in-front of the ship
As for my gear, it was already Blue/Red; and most of it crafted. So I didn't do anything with it.