Jarvis Steers the A-Team to Super Victory in Bristol; England A 21 Wales A 29

Western Mail (Cardiff, Wales), March 23, 2002 | Go to article overview

Jarvis Steers the A-Team to Super Victory in Bristol; England A 21 Wales A 29


Byline: ANDY HOWELL at Ashton Gate

LEE JARVIS replied in the best possible way to being over-looked by the Wales management, steering Wales A to a super victory over England's second-string at Ashton Gate, Bristol last night.

The Neath outside-half must have thought he was in with a chance of being called up to the senior team as the back condition of Stephen Jones worsened during the build-up to the Twickenham encounter.

However, caretaker coach Steve Hansen plumped for uncapped 20-year-old Nicky Robinson because the Cardiff player can cover No 10, centre and full-back.

But the once-capped Jarvis admirably refused to let that get to him and threw his hat into the international ring with a vital 17point haul.

He was successful with a conversion, three penalties and two dropgoals to keep Wales's bid for the Six Nations A championship alive.

Jarvis did miss five kicks at goal - if he had put them over it would have been a comfortable victory -but his defence showed further improvements and he made two lightening blindside breaks.

One of them should have led to a try but scrum-half and Neath teammate Andy Moore choose the wrong option while the other resulted in left-wing Matthew Watkins scoring to put Wales in front for the third and final time during a cracking encounter watched by 9,750 spectators.

Victory maintained Wales's remarkable record against England at this level. They have now won three out of the five matches between the countries with one drawn.

Both sides had seven internationals in their starting line-ups and it was one of them, Jarvis, who gave Wales A the lead with a secondminute drop-goal after former Wales rugby league player Phil Jones had dropped a pass.

But Wigan-born Jones made a blistering break soon afterwards and was heavily involved again in the movement that led to former British Lions hooker Mark Regan scoring an unconverted try in the corner.

French referee Didier Mene had been unsighted when centre Mark Taylor was driven over the England try-line and gave a 5m scrum.

Wales wheeled it to create space for No 8 Michael Owen to pick up and lunge forward. …

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