04 Nov 2018, 01:29 IST
Coach Warren Gatland was counting positives after his Wales aspect gained its November rugby take a look at opener for the primary time in 16 years.
One large optimistic was enjoying Scotland and never Australia on Saturday.
Scotland was held off 21-10 in Cardiff. Wales needed to endure a 20-minute siege of its 22 by the Scots within the second half, performed 10 minutes down a person, and nonetheless managed to maintain the Scots scoreless.
“First recreation for 4 months, we have been a bit rusty,” Gatland mentioned. “If we had come up towards Australia in the present day, we’d have struggled, with them coming in off the again of a Rugby Championship.”
The Welsh normally meet a southern hemisphere heavyweight of their November opener, however invited Scotland for less than their second non-championship match in 135 years.
The scheduling paid off. Wales gained a 10th straight residence match towards Scotland, and has gained six straight total for the primary time in six years.
Gatland believes the cobwebs have been dusted off and they’re in fine condition for his or her subsequent match: Australia.
“We scored some good tries and will probably be higher for that,” he mentioned. “Scotland put us beneath a variety of strain however we defended properly. Put ourselves beneath strain happening to 14. We got here out of it fairly positively.”
Wales began higher beneath the roof, Leigh Halfpenny kicking them 9-Zero forward and passing 700 factors for the staff.
George North, who had a strive disallowed early, scored his 34th to go away Ieuan Evans behind to be third on the Wales all-time try-scorers record. From a scrum on the Scotland 22, North popped up within the line, far off his proper wing, and slipped off facilities Huw Jones and Alex Dunbar and carried Blair Kinghorn over the road in an excellent solo strive.
The 14-Three scoreline was truthful on the run of play as Wales bossed the gainline.
However with 5 minutes to go, Scotland waived off a penalty shot within the 22 and went for a nook lineout. The Scots drove, sheared off the correct and captain Stuart McInally barged over.
Scotland, crushed on the identical floor in February, was trailing solely 14-10 at halftime.
However not for lengthy. The Wales backs performed a set transfer to perfection off fast lineout ball. Flyhalf Gareth Anscombe doubled spherical Hadleigh Parkes, dummy runners fooled the Scots, and Jonathan Davies palmed off Jones and scooted 30 meters free to the tryline. This was Jones’ first take a look at in a 12 months after breaking his foot a 12 months in the past.
Scotland then made all of the working, however Wales made all of the stopping, even whereas alternative hooker Elliot Dee was sin-binned after repeated fouls in protection.
Scotland lastly cracked when a seven-man Wales scrum earned a penalty towards Scotland to alleviate the siege.
Wales was compelled to make 179 tackles total, thwarting Scotland’s overwhelming territory and possession within the second half. The Scots had three strive probabilities and have been held up, stopped quick, and the ball was dropped over the try-line.
They return residence to face Fiji subsequent weekend, whereas Wales look to finish a 13-match, 10-year dropping run to the Wallabies.
“It isn’t about getting the monkey off the again,” Gatland mentioned. “We have been unfortunate at instances however it might be good to win subsequent week and get a end result. However the extra essential recreation will probably be on the World Cup (subsequent 12 months).
“They have their very own pressures again residence and them needing performances and outcomes, too. It’s going to be attention-grabbing subsequent week.”
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