Canada open with win over Italy
June 4, 2011
Canada's Chauncey O'Toole breaks free down the left wing during his side's win over Italy in Northampton
© Getty Images
Canada opened their Churchill Cup campaign with an impressive 26-12 victory over tournament newcomers Italy 'A' at Franklin's Gardens on Saturday afternoon.
The Canadians, runners-up 12 months ago, outscored their opponents by three tries to nil, with all of their scores coming in a glorious 12-minute spell in the third quarter in which Aaron Carpenter, Jason Marshall and James Pritchard all touched down. Fullback Pritchard also contributed eight points with the boot, while fly-half Ander Munro landed a first-half drop goal.
The Italians disappointed on their Churchill Cup bow, managing just four penalties from goal-kicking scrum-half Tito Tebaldi.
There was little to choose between the two sides during a tight and turgid opening 40 minutes but the Italians reached the interval with a three-point lead in hand courtesy of three successful strikes on goal from Tebaldi.
However, the sin-binning of Valerio Bernabo two minutes into the second half turned the game in Canada's favour. The Canucks struck twice, through Carpenter and Marshall, whilst their opponents were down to 14 to open up a 16-9 advantage.
The Italians were still reeling when Pritchard blazed over on 56 minutes to effectively put the game beyond them. Italy did manage another penalty from Tebaldi, just after the hour, but Pritchard replied in kind with just ten minutes to go to seal victory for his side.
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