Wales head coach Stephen Jones felt the jubilation of an entire nation as they reached the semi-finals for the first time since 2013 with a 70-36 victory over Scotland.
Andrew Higgins led the charge, scoring four tries and converting nine of Wales’ 12 scores to see them through to their second-ever semi-final.
Dan Grant matched his Welsh counterpart with four tries to continue his record of scoring in every game as Scotland’s campaign ended with another battling defeat.
Wales opened with a heavy loss to France before wins over the USA and Scotland saw them into the last four.
“Words can’t describe it,” Jones said. “We knew we had to win the next two games and people back home are behind us 120 per cent.
“We even got a lovely little video yesterday from a little girls’ team in Wrexham, the Valkyries, wishing us all good luck in Welsh and in English.
“It’s as much for the people back home as it is for us that win today, I couldn’t ask for more from the boys and girls, they have given their souls.”
Harry Jones’ wonderful solo try was the pick of Wales’ six first-half scores as Scotland looked to keep pace through Grant, Mike Mellon and John Willans.
Wales then pulled away in the second half as Andrew Higgins and Scott Trigg-Turner scored hat-tricks, with Jones and Martin Lane notching two each.
Only Alan Caron remains from Wales’ 2013 squad, and captain Stuart Williams hopes today’s performance serves as a reminder of what his side can do.
He said: “My first semi-final, it’s a really big thing and there will be a lot of pressure going forward because we are not here just to partake.
“We are here to compete and actually win, and that’s what we’ve hopefully proved out there.
“Going and having a 140-plus defeat to the French and then coming back and having a great showpiece game against the USA and another great showpiece game against Scotland there.”
Scotland captain Mike Mellon took an unusual approach of purposefully not knowing what was on the line as they kicked off the game.
After the USA’s defeat to holders France earlier in the day, a Scotland win would have put them in the semi-finals at Wales’ expense.
He said: “We decided this morning that all phones would be switched off from 11 o’clock and no one would know the score of the game.
“We didn’t know going into that game, because it could have affected the performance on the pitch, we didn’t want that in the back of our minds.
“I don’t actually know the result even now, we tried to focus on our game and get the result we needed but unfortunately it never happened today.
Both he and head coach Mark Roughsedge took pride in how much the defeat hurt them, as the latter reflected on the wholesale improvement from their 2017 showing where they finished last.
Roughsedge said: “It’s an unusual feeling of being deflated for us because we’re normally pretty happy with what has gone on.
“It just gives you a reflection of where we’re currently at and the trajectory we are on, we were very disappointed with that game.
“We were disappointed that we didn’t execute the game plan and that’s a compliment to where we are on our journey.
“I honestly believe in the next World Cup we will be very, very competitive to the point where we’re challenging in the knockout stages, that’s a goal we have got in this group.”
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