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Japan rally to beat Canada in Pacific Nations Cup

Comeback kings: A second half salvo from Japan decided the contest.

Comeback kings: A second half salvo from Japan decided the contest. Photo: AP Photo/The Canadian Press

Japan rallied with 25 unanswered points in the second half on Saturday to beat Canada 34-25 in a Pacific Nations Cup match.

The hosts appeared to be on their way to victory after reeling off 17 points late in the first half en route to a 25-9 halftime lead.

But the Japanese came back with a vengeance in the second half.

Time
80.00
Team
CAN
Score
25
Team
JPN
Score
34
Canada versus Japan
View Match Statistics
Players Moonlight (1min), Paris (1min), Hearn (2min) Tries 3 Tries 3 Players Tamura (41min), Fujita (41min), Tui (41min)
Players Paris 1/1 (100%), Pritchard 1/2 (50%) Conversions 2 Conversions 2 Players Goromaru 2/3 (66%)
Players Pritchard 1/1 (100%) Penalty goals 1 Penalty goals 5 Players Goromaru 5/5 (100%)
Players Pritchard 1/1 (100%) Drop goals 1 Drop goals 0 Players

Yoshikazu Fujita, Yu Tamura and Hendrik Tui had tries for Japan, with Ayumu Goromaru kicking five penalties and two conversions.

John Moonlight, Ciaran Hearn and Taylor Paris scored tries for Canada, and James Pritchard added two penalties and two conversions.

Fujita's try in the 42nd minute trimmed the deficit to 25-14.

Goromaru missed the conversion, but kicked his fourth penalty in the 56th minute to make it 25-17 and a Tamura try and Goromaru conversion saw Japan narrow the gap to just one point.

Tui gave Japan the lead with a try, and Goromaru added the conversion and one more penalty on the final kick of the game.

The six-team Pacific Nations Cup tournament also includes Samoa, Fiji, Tonga and the United States.

Underdogs Tonga launched the competition with an 18-18 draw in injury time against Samoa in Apia on Saturday.

This year the tournament has been split into two conferences for the first time - Pool A featuring the Pacific island nations of Fiji, Samoa and Tonga, while Pool B comprises Japan, Canada and the United States.

In the next round, defending champions Fiji host Tonga and the United States clash with Japan in Los Angeles.

AFP

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