The powerful set piece and skillful flyhalf play of the England Saxons has ended the Canadian men's hopes of leaving the last-ever Churchill Cup victorious.
Canada challenged the Saxons defensively and had moments of brilliance in attack, but the game opened up in toward the end, leaving a disappointed Canadian team on the wrong end of a 37-6 scoreline in the Churchill Cup final.
In a bitter-sweet end to the tournament, New Brunswick flanker Chauncey O'Toole was named the Sky Sports tournament MVP.
Near lost for the words following the game, O'Toole appeared gutted by the loss.
“It's a disappointing way to end,” he said. “I don't really feel we put our best foot forward today, but we'll learn from it.”
With the win, the Saxons capped the nine-year history of the tournament in the same way they opened it at the first fixture in 2003.
Despite the loss, all the signs were there to indicate Canada's hard work on the training pitch was paying off.
Defensively, for the majority of the game, they're hard-nosed approach to the tackle zone shut down many of the Saxons threatening outside runs.
And while they lacked a desirable amount of possession, when they had the ball their attack was enterprising, but resulted in only half breaks more often than not.
In the end though, as coach Kieran Crowley had predicted, the Saxons set piece proved a dangerous and discouraging launching pad for attacking raids on the Canadian line.
Canada found themselves in better shape than the Saxons' other Churchill Cup opponents at the half, down by just nine points, 15-6, after a couple of lapses in an otherwise strong first half.
The Saxons' intentions were shown early, as the defending champions were attacking the line for several phases before kicking for territory and putting the challenge out there for the Canadian lineout.
In an early indication of just how much preparation the Canadian team has done in the build up to the final, Canada handled their defensive responsibilities well in the opening stanza.
However the set piece proved to be dangerous early, as the Saxons won short-hand penalties on two of the first three scrums.
Canada's lineout looked much better, while their first throw resulted in a turnover, their second was a shining example of their belief in themselves.
Camped within five meters of their line, Canada threw to Jamie Cudmore, brought the ball down and mauled it out of the danger zone.
The deadlock broke 11 minutes in when Brian Erichsen was called offside in a maul close to Canada's line and man of the match Rory Clegg kicked the first points for the Saxons.
Canada were right back in it three minutes later when they managed to trap the Saxons in their own end and set up for an Ander Monro drop goal on a penalty advantage.
Then, midway through the first half, the Saxons strength in the scrum led to a charge down the wing before flanker James Gaskell crossed over for an unconverted try in the corner.
Canada's troubles only deepened shortly afterwards when Miles Benjamin snagged an intercept on a Canadian counter attack. Clegg added the extras and the Saxons led 15-3.
Pritchard added a penalty kick before the close of the half to take cut the Saxons lead down, 15-6.
An early penalty to Clegg put the Saxons on the front foot in the second half, but some adventurous attacking play from Canada showed they would not die wondering.
In the defensive zone, Canada narrowly avoided embarrassment when Ciaran Hearn scrambled to clean up a loose ball inside his 22-metre line and threw a wild pass, which was mercifully cleaned up by Pritchard inside the in-goal.
Canada showed signs of breaking through the Saxons defenses, including a huge run from Skye Sports tournament MVP Chauncey O'Toole, but each time the favorites were able to scramble in defense and shut the opportunity down.
Realizing the Canadian defense and work rate were solid enough that no simple act of rugby would break the game open, Saxon fly-half Clegg chose another avenue.
With 20 minutes left in the game, Clegg sent a well-weighted kick into space, allowing his winger Benjamin to snatch it up and dive over for a converted try.
As the game wound down, mistakes began to creep into the Canadian game and the Saxons were able to capitalize when a simple box kick was left to bounce and winger Charlie Sharples was able to field the ball and force his way to the try line.
The Saxons' victory was secured beyond doubt in the final five minutes with a converted try to flanker Jamie Gibson.
The 2011 Churchill Cup fixture was the final year of the tournament, as both Canada and the United States will participate in the International Rugby Board's global rugby calendar as of 2012.
Canada 6 – England Saxons 37.
Canada penalty goal – James Pritchard.
Drop goals – Ander Monro.
England Saxons tries – James Gaskell, Miles Benjamin (2), Charlie Sharples, Jamie Gibson.
Conversions – Rory Clegg (3).
Penalty goals – Clegg (2).
1. Hubert Buydens - Prairie Wolf Pack/CRC (Saskatoon, SASK)
2. Pat Riordan (Captain) - B.C. Bears/CRC (Burnaby, B.C.)
3. Jason Marshall - B.C. Bears/CRC (Vancouver, B.C.)
4. Brian Erichsen - B.C. Bears/CRC (Vancouver, B.C.)
5. Jamie Cudmore - Clermont Auvergne/PRO (Squamish, B.C.)
6. Jebb Sinclair - The Rock/CRC (Fredericton, N.B.)
7. Chauncey O'Toole - The Rock/CRC (Belle Isle, N.B.)
8. Aaron Carpenter - Plymouth Albion/UK (Brantford, ON)
9. Sean White - B.C. Bears/CRC (Victoria, B.C.)
10. Ander Monro - Ontario Blues (Victoria, B.C.)
11. James Pritchard - Bedford Blues/UK (Parkes, NSW, Australia)
12. Ryan Smith - Prairie Wolf Pack/CRC (Caledon, ON)
13. Phil Mackenzie - Esher/UK (Oakville, ON)
14. Ciaran Hearn - The Rock/CRC (Conception Bay, NFLD)
15. Matt Evans - Unattached (Duncan, B.C.)
16. Andrew Tiedemann - Prairie Wolf Pack/CRC (St. Albert, AB)
17. Scott Franklin – Prairie Wolf Pack/CRC (Regina, SASK)
18. Tyler Hotson - Plymouth Albion/PRO (Vancouver, B.C.)
19. Nanyak Dala - Prairie Wolf Pack/CRC (Saskatoon, SASK)
20. Jamie Mackenzie – Esher/UK (Oakville, ON)
21. Nathan Hirayama – B.C. Bears/CRC (Vancouver, B.C.)
22. Conor Trainor - B.C. Bears/CRC (Vancouver, B.C.)
Coach Kieran Crowley
Assistants: Geraint John, Clive Griffiths, Neil Barne
Video Analyst: Calum Ramsey
Manager: Rodger Swany
Referee: Romain Poite.