Wales v Ireland report: Jamie Roberts seals Wales win

Wales have beat Ireland 22-9 at the Principality Stadium to return to winning ways and deal their opponents a major blow in the race for the Six Nations title.

Englishman Barnes had been a major factor in Ireland's defeat on their last visit to Wales two years ago when he repeatedly penalised them at the breakdown for tacklers not rolling away.

"It's devastating", admitted the defeated skipper.

"We all know the importance of it with one eye on the championship". We knew it was going to be a really tough ask and tough game but we'll look back at that on Sunday night and we'll be disappointed that the score didn't reflect [the game].

"We know that it will only happen if we perform tomorrow, and that is all we will be focusing on".

"We weren't saying there was any type of demise".

"For us it is about tidying up bits and pieces rather than saying "Here is a list of things we need to do better". That's how it proved to be.

"There has been a fallow week in between, so you don't get that direct response from a team that you'd normally expect", he reasoned.

But Ireland blew a golden opportunity when Henshaw was penalised just inches from Wales' line, and the home side prevailed, despite the visitors again laying siege during a frantic finale, as Roberts marked his 90th cap by finishing them off.

In the Super Rugby matches earlier Friday, the Chiefs had the better of the Hurricanes in Hamilton 23-18, a penalty by Damian McKenzie at the hooter denying the losers a bonus point.

Arsenal boss Wenger happy Welbeck on scoresheet
The fact Arsenal have yet to decide on the future of their two best players speaks volumes about the state of the club as a whole. My only regret is that we lost the game. "For us it is not a big advantage and Alexis had a big impact on the game".

"They've also got a good scrum, a great line-out and they're very physical around the park".

Since then, they have won just three of 15 matches in Cardiff against the Irish, drawing one and losing 11.

A few seconds to catch our breath, and then Robbie Henshaw and CJ Stander stopped a ridiculously pacey crash ball head-on before Rob Kearney went bosh-for-bosh with a Welsh winger on the other side of the pitch, but the biggest of the lot was Henshaw, again, lowering the boom on Wales prop Rob Evans. "The last couple of weeks we have played exciting rugby".

"It's hugely frustrating to lose these games".

"That costs you dearly". "We will be going all out to finish with a win". "Whereas we have got a reasonable level of consistency now", the hooker said.

"I'm sitting here shaking with anticipation right now, I just want to get out there and play".

Wales coach Rob Howley says George North demonstrated he is a world class player with his two tries in the 22-9 win over Ireland. "When you praise guys too much, they sit back, but if you criticise, they might go into their shells".

Still, it feels like the Irish have taken a step back from those heady days of last autumn, which earned them the tag of favorites heading into the Six Nations.

"And I'm sure he's highly motivated to have a really good game, as are the rest of the Welsh XV". Between 68 and 72 minutes was the key, we held Ireland up, had a fortunate penalty and got out of trouble.


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