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Last Updated: Wednesday, 26 May, 2004, 20:32 GMT 21:32 UK
Wales 42-0 Barbarians
Wales fly-half Ceri Sweeney makes a break to score the game's first try
Wales: (13) 42
Tries: C Sweeney, G Thomas, R Williams, D Peel, G Henson, H Luscombe
Cons: C Sweeney (3)
Pens: Sweeney (2)
Barbarians: (0) 0
Att: 11,381
Mike Ruddock enjoyed a perfect start to his tenure as Wales coach as his side scored six tries in a comfortable win over the Baa-Baas at Bristol.

Fly-half Ceri Sweeney scored a superb solo converted-try and two penalties to give Wales a 13-0 lead at half-time.

Gareth Thomas, Rhys Williams, Dwayne Peel, Gavin Henson and Hal Luscombe also crossed to secure a fine victory.

The only sour note on a night of many positives for Wales was a serious looking ankle injury for Thomas.

After a scrappy opening when the Barbarians breached the Wales defensive line twice with ease, Sweeney put the first points on the board with a 13th minute converted try.

The fly-half's dummy and side-step took him between prop Ollie Le Roux and full-back Bruce Reihana to score under the posts.

Wales then launched a superb attack straight from the kick-off and Peel was denied a try when Nathan Grey beat him to the loose ball near the posts and Reihana moped-up in the in-goal area.

Sweeney then kicked a penalty and then added a second, following Grey's sin-binning for killing the ball.

Gareth Thomas' injury was the only negative in a very positive display
Wales coach Mike Ruddock
The home side looked dangerous with ball in hand, and Williams almost found the telling inside pass after breaking towards the right corner.

But his pass went forward and the Baa-Baas finally showed some of their traditional flair from the resulting scrum when South African flyer Breyton Paulse danced his way clear.

A try looked on the cards when the winger reached Welsh territory, but the move ended when Dafydd James' off-load fell to Wales captain Colin Charvis.

Wales were given an early scare from the second-half kick off when Brett Cockbain knocked down fell to Andre Vos.

But the handling errors which were far too prevalent in the opening half continued to frustrate the Baa-Baas.

And it was Baa-Baas turnover which led to Wales' second try.

Captain Colin Charvis dived on the loose ball near the halfway line and sent centre Sonny Parker on is way.

Shane Williams took the ball on further and then fed Thomas to run in unopposed - only for Baa-Bass hooker Matt Sexton to push an unfriendly hand in his face after the Toulouse-bound full-back had touched down.

Sweeney converted for a 20 point advantage which, even after only 44 minutes, looked an unassailable lead.

Wales full-back Gareth Thomas uses his strength to make a break
Thomas was in inspired form before his injury
Thomas was then instrumental in setting up the third try five minutes later when his surge from and pass from 10 meters out led to Williams crossing.

Miss-handling denied scoring opportunities Thomas Castaignede for the Baa-Baas and then Sweeney for Wales as the game opened up.

There were worried faces on the Wales bench as Thomas left the field on a stretcher just after the hour mark after twisting his ankle in a tackle, but the smiles soon returned as Peel benefited form an impressive drive from the pack to score.

The fifth try soon followed as Peel fed Williams from a quick tap penalty inside Welsh territory, and the winger gave Henson a chance to show his strength and speed to add another five points.

With the Baa-Baas defensive in disarray, replacement Luscombe scored his first international try after a sweeping move from left to right.

Sweeney added the extra points, and the Wales defence held firm in the remaining five minutes to leave the Baa-Bass pointless for the first time since 1978.


Wales: G Thomas (Toulouse), R Williams (Blues), S Parker (Warriors), G Henson (Ospreys), S Williams (Ospreys), C Sweeney (Warriors), D Peel (Scarlets), D Jones (Ospreys), M Davies (Warriors), A Jones (Ospreys), B Cockbain (Warriors), G Llewellyn (Ospreys), C Charvis (Tarbes, capt), J Forster (Dragons), M Owen (Dragons).

Replacements: H Bennett (Ospreys), G Jenkins (Warriors), P Sidoli (Dragons), D Jones (Scarlets), M Phillips (Scarlets), N Robinson (Blues), H Luscombe (Dragons).

Barbarians: B Reihana (Northampton and New Zealand), D James (Harlequins and Wales), D Traille (Pau and France), N Grey (Waratahs and Australia), B Paulse (Stormers and South Africa), M Burke (Waratahs and Australia, capt), N de Kock (Stormers and South Africa), O Le Roux (Sharks and South Africa), M Sexton (Ulster), R Bands (Bulls and South Africa), B Mika (Auckland Blues and New Zealand), M Connors (Northampton and Australia), O Magne (Montferrand and France), A Vos (Harlequins and South Africa), E Miller (Leinster and Ireland).

Replacements: A Oliver (Otago and New Zealand), J Leonard (Harlequins and England), O Finegan (ACT Brumbies and Australia), A Persico (Agen and Italy), M Robinson (Northampton and New Zealand), D Humphreys (Ulster and Ireland), T Castaignede (Saracens and France).




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