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Dublin: 5 °C Tuesday 19 February, 2019
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Wales equal their best-ever winning run but fail to secure bonus point in Rome

Josh Adams and Owen Watkin touched down for Warren Gatland’s side in their victory over Italy.

Wales celebrate Owen Watkin's try in Rome.
Wales celebrate Owen Watkin's try in Rome.
Image: Tommy Dickson/INPHO

Italy 15 

Wales 26

WALES MADE HISTORY by equalling their best run of 11 straight Test wins with a 26-15 victory over Italy in the Six Nations in Rome this evening. 

Josh Adams and Owen Watkin touched down after the break after Dan Biggar had kicked four first-half penalties for the visitors to lead 12-7 at the interval.

Italy got two tries through Braam Steyn and Edoardo Padovani but the Azzurri fell to their 19th consecutive defeat in the tournament.

The Welsh last achieved 11 consecutive wins in 1910, and will bid to break the record against England at the Principality Stadium in two weeks’ time.

Having staged a remarkable second-half comeback in France last time out, Warren Gatland’s side were far from at their best against a side whose opening loss at Scotland was a record 18th in succession in this competition.

The boot of Biggar earned the visitors a seemingly commanding 12-0 lead in the first half but Steyn’s score and Tommaso Allan’s penalty saw that advantage cut to only two at the break.

It was Adams who made a breakthrough 15 minutes into the second period, going over in the left corner at the end of a sweeping move and Watkin made the game safe as Wales moved top of the early table despite Padovani’s late consolation score.

Wales had trailed 16-0 in Paris last week but they needed a little over a minute to forge ahead here as Biggar slotted a simple penalty and added three more before the half-hour as the Azzurri repeatedly transgressed.

Liam Williams Liam Williams at full-time. Source: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

Italy belatedly got a foothold in the game and turned down a kickable penalty — a decision that was vindicated as they retained the ball from the line-out and worked it right for Steyn to barge over.

Allan struck the post with a chance to reduce the deficit to two at the break but he made no mistake from right in front shortly after the interval.

But Wales finally found some attacking fluency, capitalising on Aled Davies’ break and working it left through the hands of Jonathan Davies and Liam Williams for Adams to score.

Jonathan Davies saw a try ruled out for a knock-on but the game was effectively put to bed 10 minutes from time as Watkin gathered Gareth Anscombe’s dink over the top to dot down, rendering Padovani’s fine late score academic.   

© AFP, 2019

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