Davies ends on high note

Canada 25 Wales 28
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The Independent Online
Wales made it six out of six on their North American tour, and three Test wins in successive weekends, when they beat Canada in Toronto last night. But, as was the case last week against the United States, they were less than fully convincing, and had to come from behind in the final quarter to beat the Pacific Rim champions.

Indeed, when the Canadian No 8, Mike Schmid, crossed Wales's line to claim his second try 17 minutes from time and steer the Canadians into a 25-21 lead, it looked as though the tourists were heading for defeat.

But a try nine minutes from time by the burly Cardiff centre Leigh Davies, which the stand-off Arwel Thomas converted, made it a fifth change of lead during the game and earned Wales a victory which in the end they deserved.

Wales won the toss and chose to play into the strong wind, but within just 16 seconds of the start they were regretting that decision when Canada's full-back Bobby Ross opened the scoring by popping over a monster 50-metre drop-goal.

Wales retaliated with a superb long-range try by the right wing Wayne Proctor, who was launched from the base of a scrum on his 22 by the acting skipper Paul John.

By half-time the tourists were 15-11 in front after Gareth Thomas had run in a second score. Arwel Thomas extended the lead with a penalty six minutes after the break but before Wales could confirm their superiority, the Canadians fought back strongly and a try by Ross, converted by skipper and Wasps stand-off Gareth Rees, levelled the scores at 18-18.

Two minutes later Arwel Thomas regained the lead with another penalty but the Canadians were able to mount a period of pressure. They capitalised on it fully when Schmid went over; Rees's conversion made it 25-21. It was then a test of character for the tourists, and they passed it with flying colours as Thomas converted Davies 's try to give the tour a perfect ending.

Canada: B Ross (James Bay); W Stanley (Cats), D Lougheed (Balmy Beach), S Bryant (Balmy Beach), S Stewart (UBC Old Boys); G Rees (Wasps, capt), J Graf (UBC Old Boys); E Evans (IBM, Japan), K Morgan (Ajax Wanderers), R Snow (Newport), J Tait (Varrie/CCSD), M James (Perpignon), A Charron (Moseley), M Schmid (Abbotsford), J Hutchinson (IBM, Japan).

Wales: K Morgan (Pontypridd), W Proctor (Llanelli), L Davies (Cardiff G Thomas (Bridgend), N Walker (Cardiff), A Thomas (Swansea), P John (Pontypridd, capt), I Buckett (Swansea), G Jenkins (Swansea), L Mustoe (Cardiff), S Moore (Swansea), M Voyle (Llanelli), A Gibbs (Llanelli), S Williams (neath), R Appleyard (Swansea).

Referee: S Borsani (Argentina)

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