Sunday, June 24, 2012

Canada 31-12 Georgia

Canada’s Conor Trainor, left, stops Georgia’s Giorgi Tkhilaishvili from scoring during the first half of play in an international rugby test match in Burnaby, B.C., on Saturday June 23, 2012.
Conor Trainor putting in a tackle
Photo: Vancouver Sun
Canada made it two from three in the month of June with a 31-12 victory over the top ranked Tier Two side from Europe, Georgia in Burnaby, Britic Colombia on Saturday afternoon. The North Americans entered the game after a win over the USA in Kingsont, Ontario and a hard fought loss vs Italy in Toronto. Georgia had also come of a loss after going down to the United States of America in Glendale, Colorado last weekend. In losing, Georgia failed to spark as it was clear that the team was not at full strength due to the non selection of a number of leading players following a long season in France and, before that, Rugby World Cup 2011. 

The match was therefore a good chance for Canada to develop and deliver a good home performance and the fans in attendance were not let down as the North Americans scored three tries to two with all three coming from the back-three as the Canadians played an exciting brand of rugby and utterly dominated the tempo of the match in the firsthalf. It was not entirely a one sided affair, however, as Georgia fought back well with the forwards, like Italy seven days earlier, attacking Canada up front where the side lacks quality players. 

Playing wing, rather than outside centre, DTH van der Merwe scored the first try, to end what has been a season with little rugby following his shoulder surgey at the end of the World Cup. Bedford Blues captain, James Pritchard scored Canada´s second try while Sean Duke scored the third. The man of the match award, however, went to Phil MacKenzie who delivered a fantastic performance after he had been moved from wing to inside centre for the match, forming a new-look combination with Conor Trainor. Kieran Crowley now has three years to build a backline around them as they appear to be a genuine world class combination. 

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