Wales thrash Canada as Halfpenny’s 100th ends in disappointment

A Wales team featuring five uncapped players recovered from an early setback to claim a comfortable victory over Canada in Cardiff on Saturday.

Wales welcomed fans back to the Principality Stadium with a 10-try thrashing of Canada on Saturday but the 68-12 victory was marred by a serious injury to Leigh Halfpenny.

The veteran full-back, playing in his 100th international for either Wales or the British and Irish Lions, lasted just two minutes before he slipped going into a challenge on the halfway line.

The game was halted for six minutes as the 32-year-old received treatment for what appeared to be a knee ligament problem.

He was loaded on to a stretcher and carried off to warm applause from the 6,164 spectators in the ground, the first crowd at the Principality since the pandemic struck last year.

Wales, already depleted by the absence of a sizeable British and Irish Lions contingent, regrouped after the exit of Halfpenny as they produced first-half tries for Tomos Williams, Jonah Holmes, Nicky Smith, Elliot Dee, James Botham and Will Rowlands.

Leading 40-5 at halftime, Wales continued the carnage in the second half as Williams added his second try soon after the restart. Holmes also claimed a double as did Taine Basham in his first Test.

Fly-half Callum Sheedy kicked seven conversions and Ben Thomas added the extras following second scores for Basham and Holmes.

Canada, who face England at Twickenham next weekend, went ahead through wing Kainoa Lloyd’s early try, but their first Test since the 2019 World Cup ended in a big defeat.

Full-back Cooper Coats claimed a late consolation touchdown, converted by fly-half Peter Nelson.


Photo: Ian Cook – CameraSport via Getty Images

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Dylan Jack