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Canada beat Barbados 71-3 in Rugby World Cup qualifier

Monday, June 26, 2006

BRIDGETOWN, Barbados (AFP): Canada romped to an 11-try victory over Barbados on Saturday, beating the Caribbean island nation 71-3 (h-t: 45-0) in a 2007 Rugby World Cup qualifier.

Wing James Pritchard set a Canadian record in scoring three tries and kicking eight conversions, for a total of 31 points, surpassing Gareth Reess national record of 27 points.

On the strength of a hat-trick of tries by Pritchard, Canada romped to a 45-0 half-time lead.

Ryan Smith, Sean-Michael Stephen, Morgan Williams and Mike Pyke also touched down. Pritchard converted five of the tries in contributing 25 points to Canadas cause in the first half.

Kert Johnston gave Barbados their only points at three minutes into the second-half from a penalty kick, before Canada went back on the offense.

Ten minutes after coming into the match, 20-year-old DTH Van der Merwe scored his first try for Canada, with Justin Mensah-Cocker adding another try at 55 minutes.

Adam Kleeberger claimed his first Canadian try with a minute to go and Van der Merwe finished off the rout with his second on the full-time whistle.

Pritchard converted three of the second-half tries.

Barbados, Canada, and the United States are in the America's 3b qualifying pool, and the winner of the group will qualify directly for the 2007 World Cup.

The second-placed team will enter a playoff round in which they will face the second team from the Americas 3a pool, which includes Argentina, Uruguay and Chile.

The 3a winner will also advance directly to the 2007 World Cup.

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