ANGHARAD James, a former pupil of Ysgol y Preseli in Crymych, was selected for new Wales boss Gemma Grainger’s first match in charge in the 3-0 friendly defeat to Canada on Friday evening.

Defensive midfielder James, born in Haverfordwest, started in a new-look 4-3-3 system, but it was always going to be a tough test for the Wales women, against a side ranked in the world’s top 10 teams.

Deanne Rose gave the visitors the lead in the first half in Cardiff, before Evelyn Viens doubled the advantage and Jessie Fleming curled home a third to secure a convincing win at Leckwith Stadium.

Grainger, who has taken over from Jayne Ludlow, said she was encouraged despite the defeat, and they could take many positives into the game against Denmark on Tuesday in another friendly.

"I thought it was a really competitive game, we competed for periods of time in the game and not only competed but dominated against a top-10 team," she commented.

"Some of the play I saw from us was positive, and that is why we want to play teams like this. I am learning about the group."

Liverpool's Ceri Holland was handed a place in the starting line-up for her senior international debut while Lily Woodham was also named in Grainger's first XI after scoring on her debut against the Faroe Islands last October.

There was an otherwise familiar look to the side as the new era for the women's national team began against a talented Canadian side, captained by all-time record international goalscorer Christine Sinclair.

There was an early test for Woodham on the left-hand side of the defence against Deanne Rose as the visitors turned their possession into a series of corners in the opening exchanges.

Midway through the opening half, Canada took the lead as Rose evaded the attention of Woodham to find herself in space on the right and fired a powerful shot past Laura O'Sullivan after being played in by Quinn.

The goal prompted a positive response from Wales and Kayleigh Green came close to levelling shortly after as the home side pushed forward in numbers.

They ended the half on top, with Jess Fishlock playing an instrumental role with her delivery into the Canadian penalty area.

Wales made a positive start to the second half with an intelligent free-kick from Rachel Rowe almost finding Fishlock in space.

However, substitute Viens doubled the advantage for Canada when she converted from close range just before the hour mark.

A fine finish from Jessie Fleming on 62 minutes increased the lead for the visitors as Welsh defence began to lose its earlier composure.

Wales could not manage a consolation goal while O'Sullivan and Sophie Ingle had to be at their very best to prevent Canada increasing their lead as spaces were exposed at the other end of the field.

Wales XI: O'Sullivan (GK), Evans, Ingle (c), R. Roberts, James, K. Green, Fishlock, Harding, Rowe, Holland, Woodham. Subs: Clark (GK), Soper (GK), Filbey, J. Green, Ward, Williams, Hughes, Estcourt, B. Roberts, Jones, Walters, Francis-Jones, F. Morgan, E. Morgan, Nolan.