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Wales Beat Australia

Wales Beat Australia

Wales recorded another magnificent victory in the Inaugural Deaf Rugby World Championships when they followed their 11-5 win over New Zealand at Auckland by defeating Australia 8-7.

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The game, played at Waitemata Park, Auckland, saw the coach delayed en route to the ground after an early kick-off at 1.30pm was designated without the knowledge of the Welsh management.

The Wales eight, led by Dunvant’s league hooker Jason Evans, drove at the Australian line only for great defence to repel them.

After ten minutes, fly half and captain Richard Evans kicked Wales in front with a penalty but Australia replied with a try from fly half Tuan Chiem, that he converted after 20 minutes for a 7-3 lead.

Fists flew on several occasions as the match hotted up and Wales no.8 James Evans was yellow carded, but Wales held on with centre Mark Withey outstanding in defence.

In the second half Australia’s big forwards battered away but could not break through and after 60 minutes Paul Watts replaced Luke Blackburn in the Wales backs and almost scored a try.

A try did come however, when James Evans, who had returned from the sin-bin, gained a decisive pushover try. With ten minutes remaining Australia missed a penalty shot and Richard Watkins made a try-saving tackle as Wales hung on for a deserved, but slender victory.

Wales: S Lloyd (Penygraig); N Francis (Bath Univ); M Withey (Brecon); L Blackburn (Abbey); A P Davies (Llandybie); R Evans (Cwmavon, capt); I Jones (Trimsaran); C Retcliffe (Eppingham), Jason Evans (Dunvant); A Lloyd (Ynsybwl); T Hughes (Maesteg Celtic); R Watkins (St Julians); N Billingham (Penygraig); James Evans (Birchgrove); A Rees (Haywards Heath). Replacements: S Burnett, J Jones, A Lewis, A.M Davies, P Watts, A Alderman, C Haddock.

Australia: D Steele; D Page; C Martin; S Thornley; V Chiem; P Chiem; C Burton; B Brial; P Erickson; D O’Halloran; D Starr; K Smith; G Betts; P Bradley; M Conroy. Replacements; D Upton, A Reid, R Papallo, P Walker, A Aberethy, I Slinn, J Parlour.

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