Sunday, March 18, 2012

Canada vs Wales - Rugby World Cup 2007

RWC 2007 captain, Morgan Williams

Canada produced some of the biggest shocks in the 1990´s with wins over elite opposition including Ireland, Italy and Wales. The North Americans also made the Quarter Finals of Rugby World Cup 1991 and for a large period were the best teams from the Americas. With the advent of professionalism, things were never the same for Canada but this has not stopped the country´s team performing well at subsequent World Cups. While the team has not been able to repeat the Quarter Finals appearnace, Canada has, nonetheless, scored some good wins over Namibia, Romania and Tonga and two draws with Japan. 

Canada´s debut match at Rugby World Cup 2007 was against Wales, the team who had surprized everybody in the 2005 Six Nations with a Grand Slam victory. Wales entered the World Cup as the second seed from its pool which also included Australia, Canada, Fiji and Japan. The Europeans were keen on putting up their hand to show they were the real thing. Canada had other ideas, however, and Wales were pushed very far. It took the introduction of Stephen Jones and Gareth Thomas int the secondhalf to change he shape of the match. Wales had been ahead 9-0 but Canada had turned the first half around to be ahead 17-9 to the delight of the Nantes crowd. Wales´s second half come back was too good for the Canadians but the match was another reminder of the power of rugby in the Americas. 

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