Belfast Telegraph

Tuesday 22 July 2014

Howley hails composed Wales

Rob Howley hailed the adaptability of Wales as they won in Rome

Wales boss Rob Howley hailed his players after they adapted superbly to testing conditions at a soaking Stadio Olimpico and kept themselves firmly in RBS 6 Nations title contention.

Torrential rain made life treacherous for the reigning Six Nations champions, but second-half tries by centre Jonathan Davies and wing Alex Cuthbert sent Italy packing 26-9.

"I am very pleased," Wales' interim head coach Howley said. "We adapted really well to the conditions and the deluge. We showed patience and composure and we took our opportunities."

He added: "Our scrum was very impressive and gave us the platform. International rugby is about fine margins, and it was testament to the attitude of the players and their application in difficult conditions.

"The adaptability of the team is very good, and they were once again very well led by Ryan (Jones)."

Italy captain Martin Castrogiovanni had no complaints after seeing his team suffer a second successive comprehensive Six Nations reversal following their 34-10 loss to Scotland a fortnight ago.

"We conceded nine points from scrums, which is my problem as well as the team's. I need to work on that," he said.

"The referee is always right. If we had done what we were told and also managed our kicking game better, maybe the referee wouldn't have mattered so much.

"There are no excuses. You need to be perfect in all aspects, but we weren't."