WALES SECURED THEIR third Grand Slam in eight years on Saturday by beating France 16-9 at the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff.
The Six Nations win helped Wales avenge their heartbreaking 9-8 loss to France in last year’s World Cup semi-final in New Zealand, and was a fitting tribute to former Wales captain Mervyn Davies, who passed away on Thursday at the age of 65.
Warren Gatland’s side set up the win in the first half with Alex Cuthbert crossing for a great try in the 22nd minute and Leigh Halfpenny had no trouble with the conversion.
Wales led 10-3 at the break, but France came out reinvigorated in the second half and a Lionel Beauxis penalty trimmed the gap to four points.
Halfpenny’s long-range penalty restored Wales’ advantage, but again the French hit back – this time through a Dimitri Yachvili penalty seven minutes from the end.
Wales were not be denied, however, and when Halfpenny scored his third penalty late on the victory was secured.
Elsewhere on Saturday, Scotland were left with the wooden spoon after suffering a 13-6 loss to Italy in Rome.
The score was locked on 3-3 at half-time after Mirco Bergamasco and Greig Laidlaw exchanged first-half penalties, but Italy were the stronger side after the break with Giovanbattista Venditti crossing for a try that Kris Burton converted.
Laidlaw did his best to keep Scotland in the game with another penalty, but a drop-goal from Burton saw Italy home to leave Andy Robinson’s side winless in the tournament.