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Gatland content with Italian job

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Warren Gatland

Warren Gatland

Warren Gatland

Coach Warren Gatland declared himself satisfied with Wales' successful Italian job after his team kept alive their RBS 6 Nations title hopes at Stadio Flaminio.

First-half tries by wing Morgan Stoddart and flanker Sam Warburton underpinned a 24-16 success, while fly-half Stephen Jones kicked 11 points and centre James Hook dropped a late goal.

Gatland said: "This is a tough place to come to and get a result. We made it difficult for ourselves in that we conceded a couple of soft tries, but we are very pleased with the result."

Italy, transformed from the side smashed 59-13 by England a fortnight ago, pushed Wales all the way, matching them on tries through touchdowns from centre Gonzalo Canale and skipper Sergio Parisse.

Wales though, prevailed, claiming a second successive Six Nations away win and remaining in the race for silverware prior to hosting Ireland next month.

Gatland continued: "We looked really sharp with the ball in hand at times, although we could have expressed ourselves a bit more in the second-half.

"Italy are a big physical side, but they played a lot more rugby and showed how difficult a team they are to beat in Rome.

"They missed a couple of shots at goal, but credit to our guys. They soaked up a lot of pressure and then went upfield and got three points through the drop-goal.

"Ireland struggled here a few weeks ago, and this game has been a real banana skin for us in the past."

"Ireland is a big game for us coming up in a couple of weeks, and then it's France away. This is a tough competition, but it is about building momentum and confidence."

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