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USA and Canada both win to set up final tie


It will be a Canada v USA final after two fierce contests as the penultimate day of action comes to an end, writes Nathaniel Holland.

 

USA 57-54 Australia

 

USA caused the biggest upset of the week to knock out world champions Australia with a tight 57-54 victory.

 

The Eagles were up for it from the start and it was a matter of fine margins with double trouble Ryley Batt and Chris Bond showing quality to give USA something to think about.

 

Paralympic gold medallist Batt spent a lot of the first period in the penalty box and USA took full advantage of that to take the lead.

 

USA managed to take a two-point advantage into the first break and continued to pressure the Aussies in the second period even though star player Chuck Aoki was resting on the bench.

 

Eric Newby and Joe Delagrave were performing in Aoki’s absence as the world number three side stretched their lead to three which was enough to give them a half-time lead of 32-29.

 

With Aoki back on court, he soon secured his 11th try as they managed the clock superbly to take full advantage of Bond’s turn in the box following some foul play.

 

Australia started to lose their grip of the game and USA capitalised and they took a five-point lead into the business end of the game.

 

The lead was stretched to six in the final moments and Australia could feel a place in the final slowly falling from their grip.

 

Batt hit over half of his nations tries but USA sailed into tomorrow night’s final.

 

Australia still have one game to play when they compete for third place in the penultimate game of the tournament.


 

Canada 60-50 Japan

 

Canada showed their class and why they are ranked second in the world after a comfortable 60-50 win over Japan.

 

Japan were in high spirits after knocking Great Britain out of the tournament just 24 hours previous but Canada were quick to stretch their unbeaten run to four games.

 

Both teams had spells in the lead in the first period but it was the current Paralympic champions who took a slender two-point lead into the break.

 

With the scores tight, Tomoaki Imai fumbled the ball in a perfect try opportunity as Canada managed to overturn possession.

 

Zak Madell scored five tries in the first period of play as he continued to show why he is one of the worlds best.

 

The lead opened up more for Canada and they managed to stretch the lead to four going into the half time interval.

 

Madell took his try tally to 22 in the third quarter as he was a dominating influence on the score for the entire game.

 

Japan knew that the odds were stacking against them when they were 11 points down with one quarter left to play.

 

Canada did enough to set up a rematch with USA, who they narrowly beat by one point in the opening game of the BT WWRC on Monday evening.