FIL World Championships 2014 - A Winning Start for Wales

Man of the match James Richardson, from Penarth Lacrosse, against Russia

Wales 10 - 2 Russia

The Dragons unleashed their first blast of fire with at the 2014 World Championship with a 10-2 scorching of Russia.

But they had to work hard to break the stubborn resistance of a nation making its debut at the Big Show.

Rhod Stanford and Dave Howie rifled in braces with eight players getting on the scoresheet in an encouraging all round display built on a rock solid performance from James Richardson between the pipes.

Russia, boasting a string of impressive American-based players, competed hard and Wales struggled to break down a disciplined zone defence.

Richardson was the busier of the keepers in the early exchanges and reacted well to snuff out a sneak round the corner. It was 17 minutes before the deadlock was broken when Stanford cleared under pressure to deliver to Paul Simpson who stepped inside the cover to slot home from close range.

Richardson again had to be on top form to swallow up a  blistering outside shot and keep Wales in front at the quarter.

Russia had a goal disallowed for a crease violation as the teams wrestled for supremacy and the temperature soared.

Andrew Gresham then connected with a brilliant cut from Ryan Walker who fired home and  Simpson picked out Eddie Owen who finished off a slick passing move for 3-0 at half time.

Dan Funnell's men were staying patient and grinding out possession with some stand out work from Mark Jones and his D unitcountering Russia's danger men.

The pressure began to tell on Russia in the third quarter and James Perrin increased their discomfort with a rapier finish from another clever period of passing on Man-Up.

Dave Howie, excellent at face throughout, scored two quick goals to kill off the Russian fight - the first a shake and bake move to dislodge the defence and score close up followed by a sharp shot on the run.

Richardson then initiated the move of the game, saving well then sending out a pass that Gresham the fed Johnny Harry to complete a stunning end to end move.

The final quarter saw Wales seal the deal in style with Stanford punching in two shots either side of a sweet passing move with Simpson and Jack Brook moving the ball unselfishly for Eoin Dunne to pop in to score on the crease.

Wales had to scrap against a tough team that eventually ran out of steam as Wales closed down space and showed composure and invention. The defense was superb and kept it tight while the attack found a pleasing rhythm and notch up a first game win.

Next game- Argentina.

 

Q Scores: 1-0 / 3-0 / 7-1 / 10-2

Scorers: Dave Howie 2, Rhod Stanford 2, Eoin Dunne, Johnny Harry, Eddie Owen, James Perrin, Paul Simpson, Ryan Walker

 

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