Gareth Bale wrote himself into the Welsh history books on Thursday as he surpassed Ian Rush's tally of 28 goals for his country.

The ​Real Madrid winger, ​in the headlines currently for being linked with a move away from the Bernabeu, hit a hat-trick against China during a dazzling display at the Guangxi Sports Center in Nanning, which reminded everybody just how naturally talented he is, to take his own tally to 29.

He struck early on to open the scoring, and then hit his second on 21 minutes with a well placed finish from inside the box. He then completed his hat-trick in the 62nd minute; perhaps surprisingly his first for his country.

Admittedly not the most fearsome opposition, it was nice to see Bale performing at his explosive best - something he has not been able to do consistently at club level because of his poor injury record.

His showing in the Far East got new manager Ryan Giggs off to the perfect start as the new manager of Wales with a 6-0 rout, and the ex-​Manchester United winger will be hoping to follow the result up with another victory against Mexico in May.