The youngest player to score a try at the Rugby World Cup is Welshman George North, who was just 19 years and 166 days old when he scored – in fact, he score twice – against Namibia in a Pool D match at the New Plymouth Stadium in Taranki, New Zealand on September 26, 2011.
Wales scored a penalty and three tries, two of which were converted by Stephen Jones, in the first 18 minutes to take a 22-0 lead. Their second-quarter performance, though, was less inspiring and the scoreline remained the same at half-time. However, Wales coach Warren Gatland gave his players what he later described as a ‘bit of a rollicking’ during the break and, early in the second half, inside centre scored an all important fourth try – thereby securing a bonus point – which was, again, converted by Jones.
Thereafter, the floodgates opened as Wales, while struggling for fluency on occasions, outclassed their tier-two opponents to win the match in a canter. North joined the fray after 55 minutes, replacing Aled Brew on the wing, and only needed five times to make an impact. On the hour mark, he sprinted onto a pop up pass from scrum-half Tavis Knoyle, rode one tackle, sidestepped another and touched down for his first try of the match. Five minutes later, inside centre Lee Byrne completed a 50- or 60-metre carry from left to right across the pitch before offloading, one-handed, to North, who wrong-footed the Namibian defence, such as it was, before diving over for his second.
A successful conversion by replacement fly-half Rhys Priestland made the score 57-7 at that stage, but Wales were by no means finished against the Welwitschias, who were, for the most part, out on their feet in the final quarter. Wales scored four more tries, making a total of 12, to win the match 81-7 and end the Southern African minnows’ interest in the tournament.