Wales have qualified for the semi-finals of the Rugby League Commonwealth Nines Championship after wins over Scotland and Jamaica on Friday.
In the first day of the tournament at Glasgow’s Broadwood Stadium, home of Clyde FC, Wales put on two excellent performances for their wins and a creditable performance in their defeat against favourites Australia.
Finishing second in their group, Wales will now take on Papua New Guinea at 3.00 pm today.
Australia take on Canada in the second semi-final at 3.30 pm.
Hosts Scotland and second favourites England both crashed out of the competition in Friday’s group stages and they will avoid each other in the first consolation semi-final today. England were shocked by Canada 24-4 in their opening game, and they will take on Jamaica today at 2.00pm before Scotland face South Africa at 2.30pm.
The Scots, however, enjoyed possibly the best result of the day, when they drew 18-18 with Australia in a Group A game.
In today’s deciders, ranking matches start at 4.00pm with the Final at 5.30pm.
Wales coach Jon Ellis said: “The lads did well today and listened to what the coaches had to say and executed it well. We ran Australia well in the first half of that game and genuinely thought we’d win. It was their sheer physicality that overcame us in the end. I’m really proud of the lads and we’re looking forward to tomorrow now. We’ll play who are in front of us. Papua New Guinea are flesh and blood like us and we’ll give 100% and hopefully get to the Final. We are a little surprised England didn’t qualify but it just shows how much skill there is all around the world when it comes to Rugby League.”
Organisers were encouraged by a crowd of 570 spectators at the first day of the tournament, and are hoping for an even bigger turnout today. The full results from the first day are set out below.
Australia 26 Jamaica 4
Scotland 6 Wales 18
Australia 34 Wales 10
Scotland 4 Jamaica 0
Wales 34 Jamaica 0
Scotland 18 Australia 18
South Africa 8 Papua New Guinea 18
Canada 24 England 4
Canada 24 South Africa 16
England 10 Papua New Guinea 16
Canada 6 Papua New Guinea 28
England 22 South Africa 6
A full report and photographs from the tournament will feature in Monday’s edition of Rugby League Express, the digital edition of which will be online from 11.00pm on Sunday evening.