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Wales remain committed and won't be reaching for the panic button, maintains Pivac



Floored: Wales’ George North and Dan Biggar feel the pain of defeat

Floored: Wales’ George North and Dan Biggar feel the pain of defeat

�INPHO/Ryan Byrne

Floored: Wales’ George North and Dan Biggar feel the pain of defeat

Wayne Pivac says there will be no panic as Wales look to regroup in this season's Guinness Six Nations Championship.

Wales will get their campaign back on track if they beat France at the Principality Stadium in two weeks. But it will be a severe examination for Pivac's men as they aim to recover from a 24-14 defeat against Ireland in Dublin.

"We certainly don't panic," Wales head coach Pivac said. "We have got to review the game. The guys are disappointed in not taking the opportunities that presented themselves in the game.

"We are obviously frustrated with our performance. We have a couple of weeks now to reflect on that so that we are a lot better in our next performance."

Whether Pivac makes changes for the France clash remains to be seen, but 93-times-capped wing George North was among those who could make little impact on the contest.

North's frustrating afternoon was highlighted near the end when he knocked on inside his own '22', and Ireland subsequently took advantage of an attacking platform to score a bonus-point try.

"At the end you look at the inaccurate pass (to North)," Pivac added. "He (North) is thinking about having a one-on-one go late in the game to try and score a try the length of the field.

"When you take a pass on your shoulder behind you, it's probably not the best pass. We won't blame George for that.

"We've got plenty to learn from that game, so we need to work hard on different aspects of the game to play the way we want to play. We have to be very accurate, so that is basic catch-pass skills, body height in contact and to make sure we are winning more contacts as well."

Wales' defeat in Dublin was their first Six Nations loss since Ireland beat them two years ago, but Pivac knows that a lot can happen during the next three rounds of fixtures.

After hosting France, Wales meet England at Twickenham before ending the tournament at home to Scotland.

"We are two games in and are obviously disappointed as the players know we are a lot better than that performance," he said.

"It is a competition. No one has won it - it's not won after two rounds - so we need to make sure we keep improving and against France we have a very good performance and we get back to winning ways.

"The competition itself is going to be a very tight one this year. You can see that already.

"We've mentioned that we need to be more accurate with the ball, build more pressure, and to do that you build phases and don't turn the ball over.

"We have to be a lot more accurate with what we are doing.

"I was impressed with their (France's) performance against England. They played very well with the ball in that first half, and then defended very well in the second half. It was a great start for them."

Justin Tipuric, meanwhile, has no doubt that Wales remain title contenders.

Asked if Wales can still win this season's competition, flanker Tipuric said: "Yes, of course.

"Especially this year, because there are so many good teams and anybody can turn over anybody on a given day.

"It's a long tournament. We won't win the Grand Slam, but we are still in with a chance of winning it (Six Nations). Anything can happen on the day."

Wales will need to monitor wing Josh Adams, who suffered a hip injury, and fly-half Dan Biggar after he failed a head injury assessment, during the build-up to France.

Tipuric added: "We gave possession away and too many penalties. They took the territory, and that's what they want.

"They are simple things (to fix) - speed of breakdown, passing and catching the ball - and it's a long tournament. Anything can happen from now until the end. We are still in it and have to learn from this game and get better and better."

Belfast Telegraph