Wales keep title bid on track with win

February 24, 2013 - 1:13:33 am

ROME: Second-half tries by Jonathan Davis and Alex Cuthbert helped seal a 26-9 win over Italy and keep Wales’ Six Nations title defence on track in difficult conditions at the Olympic Stadium here yesterday.

Wales went in at half-time 9-6 to the good after Leigh Halfpenny kicked three penalties to the two coverted for the hosts by Kris Burton. 

However neither team would boast of dominating the other in a dire opening half beset by periodic spells of heavy rain.

Wales, looking for their second win of the tournament having beaten France in Paris after an opening defeat to Ireland, finally found their stride after the interval.

“It was a good performance, especially up front,” said Davies. “The boys were fantastic and worked really hard. As a backline we had to keep our errors down and put them in the right places.

“To be fair, the pack were on fire today.”

Italy, however, were unlucky not to be rewarded in the first minute of the second half when the Welsh defence were guilty of handling errors. Only Tomasso Benvenuti’s failure to collect the ball and carry it over the tryline from two metres out stopped the hosts from earning a potential game-changing try.

In near desperation minutes later Burton tried to make amends but, for the second time in the game, missed a drop goal from 30 metres out. Italy were without captain Sergio Parisse, who was banned for 30 days. AFP

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