Canada’s women’s rugby team finished third at the IRB Challenge Cup after defeating Australia 19-14 on Sunday.
Canada trailed 7-0 at halftime before tries from Mandy Marchak of North Vancouver, B.C., Ghislaine Landry of Toronto and a winning last-second score from Kayla Moleschi of Williams Lake, B.C., sealed the win.
The victory was a consolation after shutting out South Africa 17-0 but missing out on the final following a 19-12 loss to England earlier in the day.
Edmonton’s Jennifer Kish scored the game-tying try with 12 seconds left against England, but Emily Scarratt broke through Canadian tacklers to score a try in sudden death for the win.
England went on to beat the Netherlands 34-7 in the final.
It’s England’s second semifinal victory over Canada this year following a win at the Hong Kong tournament in March. Canada earned a victory over England in the final at Dubai in December.
“Results like these just tell us that the work our women are putting in is paying off,” said Canadian assistant coach Sandro Fiorino. “I think if you had asked us 18 months ago if we thought we would consistently be in the semifinals and finals of international tournaments, I’m not sure anyone would have predicted that.”
Defending champion Canada now focuses on the Amsterdam Sevens, which start Saturday.
“We have another opportunity next weekend at the Amsterdam Sevens and our goal remains the same, to win the tournament,” said Fiorino. “The top twelve teams in the world will be there, so it should prove an excellent test.”
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