7th July 2003, 17:32
2003 Wales A 48 Scotland A 22
Wales, the reigning amateur four nations rugby league champions
Wales, the reigning amateur four nations rugby league champions, made up for last month's defeat in Ireland by scoring six second-half tries to pull away from a spirited Scotland side who had matched them up to the break.
Scotland took an early lead through a Barry Edgar penalty, and extended their advantage to 8-0 on 8 minutes when James MacKay raced over after picking up a spilled bomb. Wales replied with a Michael Healy penalty and drew level on 17 minutes when Mark Bow set up Cardiff teammate Mark Dando to go in from ten yards out.
Aberavon's Dean Scully latched on to a bullet pass from Healy for the only other try of a well-contested first half. Scotland kept in touch through further penalty goals from Edgar, leaving Wales with a narrow 14-12 interval lead.
But the second half was a different story as the home side began to dominate. Prop forward Wes Palmer, playing his first game since his return from Australia with the Great Britain student tour, took the ball in with a powerful run from 30 yards out to extend the Welsh lead to six points, only to see Scotland strike back a minute later when Calum Morrison scored in the corner.
Two tries within three minutes, the first a great passing movement finished off by winger Sean O'Brien and the second a moment of opportunism from Scully after a kick ahead by Healy, pushed the Welsh advantage to 14. Scotland responded with a Matt Stevens try set up by scrum-half Al Stewart of London Skolars to bring the score back to 30-22, but the visitors were unable to cross the Welsh line again.
Swansea's Simon Bevan grabbed two tries in the last quarter and in between Healy put Welsh captain John Byers in for another as the home side went away with a convincing 26 points victory.
Wales coach Wayne Williams was delighted with the win, which keeps his team in the reckoning for the trophy. "It was an excellent second-half performance today," said Williams. "We played well as a unit, so now bring on the English". Wales host the England Lionhearts in a make-or-break clash on September 14th while Scotland face an Ireland side still in with a chance of taking the championship the same weekend.
1 Simon Bevan (Swansea Bulls)
2 Ben Kerr
3 Sion Williams (Cardiff Demons)
4 Dean Scully (Aberavon Fighting Irish)
5 Sean O'Brien (Aberavon Fighting Irish)
6 Michael Healy (Aberavon Fighting Irish)
7 Peter Moore (Cardiff Demons)
8 Mark Dando (Cardiff Demons)
9 Mark Bow (Cardiff Demons)
10 Wes Palmer (Cardiff Demons)
11 Sean Gilbertson (Cardiff Demons)
12 Darren Ryan (Aberavon Fighting Irish)
13 John Byers (Cardiff Demons (C))
Subs (all used)
14 Simon Bailey (Aberavon Fighting Irish)
15 Stewart Richards (Cardiff Demons)
16 Lawrence Griffiths (Aberavon Fighting Irish)
17 Paul Whapham (Swansea Bulls)
1 Barry Edgar (Glasgow Bulls)
2 Mark Webster (Liverpool Buccaneers)
3 Matt Stevens (Glasgow Bulls)
4 Calum Morrison (Glasgow Bulls)
5 Donald Anderson (Scotland Students)
6 Andrew Borthwick (Newcastle Knights)
7 Al Stewart (London Skolars)
8 Ash Carroll (Liverpool Buccaneers) (C)
9 David Anderson (Scotland Students)
10 Jon Fitt (Scotland Students)
11 Kov Bahadoli (Scotland Students)
12 Howard Cameron (Glasgow Bulls)
13 James MacKay (Carlisle Centurions)
Subs (all used)
14 Paul Clarke (Somerset Vikings)
15 Dougie Thomson (Portobello)
16 Scott MacGillivray (Fife Lions)
17 Ted Rodgers (Clyde Buccaneers)
Article by Ian Golden
27 Jul 2003