After an opening game loss to world no.3 England, the Canadian Women’s National Team went undefeated in four straight games and finished their U.K. Tour with a dominant 4-0 shutout victory over Wales, Wednesday in Cardiff.
Canada finishes its U.K. tour with a record of 2W-2D-1L, with both wins and one draw coming against Wales, and the other draw against England.
“It was a great way to finish an invaluable tour with both a positive performance and a positive result,” says Women’s National Team head coach Ian Rutledge.
“Particularly pleasing was the way in which we displayed considerable reilsinece in both trying conditions and against a determined opposition.”
In the final match, Canada got out to an early lead as in the second minute Brienne Stairs (Kitchener, Ont.) converted a rebound from a Karli Johansen (North Vancouver, B.C.) drag flick to make it 1-0.
Before the half was out, after an impressive build up from the Canadian back four, opened up the middle of the pitch for Poonam Sandhu (Vancouver, B.C.) who took a great shot to beat Welsh keeper Rose Thomas and mad it 2-0 in the eighteenth minute.
In the second half the Canadian attacked continued with Sara McManus (Tsawwassen, B.C.) and Kate Gillis (Kingston, Ont.) teaming up to find an overlapping Hannah Haughn (North Vancouver, B.C.), who’s pass was deflected into the goal by Stairs for her second of the game to give Canada a 3-0 lead in the fortieth minute.
Veteran Thea Culley (Rossland, B.C.) got Canada’s fourth goal of the game in the fifty-second minute when she found herself on the positive end of Gillis’ cross.
“The girls stuck to their roles and our patience on the ball allowed us to erode the Welsh defensive foundations,” says Rutledge. “The combination play on attack was impressive and it was great to see a lot of the offensive work we have been focusing on this tour come together.”
The women now return home to Canada to focus on preparation for the Commonwealth Games. A final Games roster will be named in June, before the team heads to Ireland in July for a pre-Games tour prior to making its way to Scotland for the competition at the end of July.