France v Wales Six Nations Rugby


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France v Wales

John Inverdale presents live coverage of France v Wales in the penultimate fixture of the 2017 Six Nations, with commentary by Eddie Butler and Jonathan Davies.


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A grey and wet Parisien welcome for the hordes of Welsh fans who have

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come to see their side's final match in this year's championship, and

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they come both in hope and expectation. Wales of won the last

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two in Paris, the last five in all, and all of us are hoping it is half

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the game we saw last weekend in Cardiff.

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At Friday night party. But serious. Individual battles. But could Wales

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really stop Ireland? Was atonement possible? Forgiveness after

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flogging? George North on the road to rediscovery. Ireland's

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flogging? George North on the road two tries, ten points. Absolved.

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This is a fiendishly detailed game. Enter the fray with intense Jamie

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Roberts. The response of Wales to their doubters.

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We are focusing on the battle for second, emotional scenes with Vern

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Cotter, Wales half to finish above Scotland by getting a bonus point

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win here today and France just need to win, and Everything after that

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determined by what happens later on. The pitch is magnificent, talking to

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some of the guys from the Welsh squad they think this is the best in

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the Six Nations and the head groundsman appears to be from

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Barnsley. It has stopped raising raining and the stage is set for a

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great finale. The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are here but we have

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rugby royalty as well in the form of Conrad Smith, the great black centre

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who is playing in France at the moment. I always get the sense that

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a New Zealand people go huh, the Six Nations. Do you see it in a

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different light? Playing here? I don't think we are that dismissive

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of it. But yeah, the proximity of the nations, the support is pretty

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special. It's hard to replicate in New Zealand. The Australians can

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come over but the events around these games, I think the level of

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the teams, aside from Italy, there is not a lot between the sides which

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made for some great rugby. The most compelling match so far was Wales

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against Ireland, Wales and changed for the third match in a row. Yes,

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consistency normally bring success and Rob Howley stuck to his guns.

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People in Wales causing for change and the introduction of young blood

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but I think after last week they are justified keeping the same team.

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People are not sure what to expect, both teams have shown flashes of

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brilliance but they have been poor in parts as well so two inconsistent

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teams. And a subplot we must mention, if people watching at home

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do not know there is a huge undercurrent of discontent in French

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rugby especially in pressie in rugby about the proposed measure between

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Racing 92 and stored Francais, Sergio Brown easy was wearing an

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armband in support of the players who have gone on strike and in

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amongst all that they have to go out on the pitch today. It's very

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complicated, you cannot rely on people, wealthy people putting money

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in the game because of this guy goes away it is what happens to the team.

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French rugby is at a turning point and maybe today will be a decider

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about what is going to happen in the next few weeks. Great game for

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certain individuals, a last calling card for the Lions, somebody who

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perhaps at the start of this championship would not have been

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going to New Zealand but now must be is Kevin Owens, winning his 50th cap

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today -- Ken Owens. He has come out of nowhere, he has been superb, done

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his job, hit his line-outs, 98%. Scrumming well, getting down the

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park, had a superb tournament. Lewis Picamoles has been outstanding, but

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he is up against Moriarty today. It's going to be a fascinating

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confrontation. When you speak about Picamoles you speak about strength

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and power. All the time he has the ball in hand, they carry is very

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good. Lots of yards with the ball in hand, one of his strengths is he

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does not go into the defender, his fitness is better and he can move

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around making him a real threat. You are playing over here so you have an

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insight into the French players, how much dynamism has the scrum-half

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brought, Baptiste Serin? I was asking other players about him when

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I first arrived, when you watch him play it is obviously wants to the

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game up. I think he has done that coming into the French team, I think

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he is So Yeon Ryu, he has a big future ahead of him.

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George North said last week, do not forget about me and if he plays like

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that again today the French backs will have to look out. He is up

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against quality winger'ss. You want to see him angry, because he is such

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a threat with his footwork and his pace, he has got the INAUDIBLE

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. This is the loudest PA in world sport.

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The players enter the fray. I should say by the way, if you are seeing

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wide angled shots of the stadium there are a lot of empty seats and I

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suspect that is partly because of the incident at all the airports

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today which may well have stopped several Welsh bands getting here

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today, and lots of bands coming into the

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it's all about fine margin, what do Wales want out of this? If you

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finished fifth with a loss, you would be desperately disappointed.

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We want the same thing. So who wins? I will go France, they were

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desperately unlucky not to win the first game against England and I

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think they are playing some really good rugby.

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CHEERING APPLAUSE

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CHEERING APPLAUSE

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Commentary on the penultimate game of the Six Nations 2017 comes from

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Jonathan Davies, Brian Miller and Eddie Butler.

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Seven different clubs represented. Clear

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only two tries in their first three games for France, for in the

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Ken Owens pinpoint accuracy at hooker.

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The Welsh backs have scored eight tries.

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A few empty seats, but still a lovely place to be in mid-March at

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the end of a championship. Alun Wyn Jones, the Welsh captain. Wales have

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won here on their last two appearances. Jake Ball, he has had a

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good season so far. The referee Didier Wayne Barnes of England. --

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today. The final weekend, the last but one game of the Six Nations. Dan

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Biggar bounces the ball on halfway. Justin Tipuric, Wales's leading

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line-out forward. Biggar starts, high into the

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Brazilian 's guide, it is a grey sky, George North gets a hand on it.

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George North doing his part, the players around could not take

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advantage. Wales have a decent platform, Ken Owens on the money for

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most of the time, should be able to build an attacking platform here.

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Overthrown, could not get it. Picamoles, France on the move. Gael

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Fickou. Two tries to his name in the championship so far. Yoann Maestri,

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huge second row. France back in their own half, now

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into the Welsh 22. Leigh Halfpenny gets the clearance away.

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Penalty advantage being played. It's a huge French pack. No advantage,

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back to the penalty. Number six penalised, Sam Warburton.

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Unnecessary, it was a good defensive set from Wales. France, despite

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getting multiple phases were not really going anywhere.

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Sam Warburton did such a good job marking CJ Stander in the last game.

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The French hooker, also their captain.

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Lopez for the first points of the game. Short.

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The bounce of a rugby ball always tricky. Dan Biggar goes long.

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Baptiste Serin. Lopez. Gael Fickou. Good pass by Gael Kakuta. To

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Picamoles. Lopez. Good tackle by Justin Tipuric. But France moving

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with purpose. Kevin Godel. Jonathan Davies with the knock-down.

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Advantage played. Penalty for the deliberate knock-on. Suggesting that

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was deliberate. But the officials are not going to review it. That was

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caused by Welsh tackling, failing, France getting numbers to the next

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breakdown and very quick ball. Important France hang on here. --

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Wales hang on here. Do not want to go seven points down in the first

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five minutes. France with this attacking line-out. Guilhem Guirado

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to throw. Overthrown. Wales still have a bit of clearing up to do but

:19:30.:19:34.

it's an excellent steal by Wales. Rhys Webb back to Dan Biggar. They

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are not out of their 22 but not as close as they were to the line. Dan

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Biggar unhappy about something. Good line speed by Wales but they cannot

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mess one tackle. They have to move the French pack around because they

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are a massive pack. They do, but they have to get some ball first.

:20:01.:20:13.

The hooker setting up the drive. I think this is what France wanted to

:20:14.:20:16.

do from five metres out. It is working well, Guilhem Guirado 's

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coming away with it. Thunderous on the charge, Sebastien

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Vahaamahina. It's the dry! -- try. Sudden change of tactics and France

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open the scoring. Wales were going to be vulnerable to that. Justin

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Tipuric does his job and dislodges the ball but the Welsh players

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around the fringes were not quick enough to drop on it and secure

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possession. From that point France were on the front foot. The midfield

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wanted to get up. That's a clever kick. Well executed by France. It's

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a very clever play because Leigh Halfpenny was defending on the

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outside. Chipped over, good play by this man.

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Two extra points safely added France in very threatening mood it would

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appear. Two missed tackles. Liam Williams. Bounced off. The little

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pink by Lopez, safely taken by Remi Lamerat that. George North in hot

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pursuit. Not the best exit from France, Wayne Barnes has given a

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scrummage. Twice George North has got up there and cause trouble on

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the Welsh kick-off, good work from him. Wales with an immediate chance

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to reply to the concession of the drive.

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Important the Welsh front five get some stability here. Driving early.

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Picamoles surveys the Welsh attacking options. Rhys Webb to feed

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the scrummage. 20 metres out from the French line. Ross Moriarty does

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well to pick the ball up. Spens infield.

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France on the attack causing problems, and that the scrummage,

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quickly taken, George North do Halfpenny. Excellent follow-up

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tackle. Rhys Webb. Evans outside, Tipuric carries on. Back to Tipuric,

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still there but the whistle has gone.

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A good choice of option, Webb spotting the two on one. Again, the

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initial Welsh player doing his job making the break. Supporting players

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not quite able to make it count. There is no prop forwards there.

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Half a dummy and he's away. Good play by Rhys Webb. The penalty that

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was short, that seems ages ago now even though we have only played

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coming up to 11 minutes. That scrummage is a problem.

:24:58.:25:15.

Moriarty did well to pick that on a retreating basis. Eddie, you will

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know about that, clumsy row of second boots on them. He did well

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not only to feel the ball but to make a bit of ground which gave the

:25:24.:25:28.

rest of the pack time to get back and secure the ball. The French

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captain is the player down. Guirado looks as if he's fit to

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carry on. Baptiste Serin to feed the

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scrummage. A chance for Wales to make amends and put some pressure on

:26:00.:26:01.

the French scrum. Rock solid from France. It would be

:26:02.:26:27.

if it was fed to number 8. Penalty nearly given but instead away comes

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Picamole. That's what he wants, a chance to run at the Welsh backs.

:26:32.:26:37.

Vakatawa. Good tackle by George North on Vakatawa but France back in

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the forward motion. France's number 7 such an important player, Gourdon.

:26:47.:26:59.

If I can call. Serin. Moriarty. -- Fickou. Back to Serin. It's goon

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loose. Wales have turned it over in the nick of time.

:27:05.:27:14.

That's the boot of Rhys Webb, how pleased he'll be to see that. Seven

:27:15.:27:38.

metres from his own line. Your Don. Biggar. Longer clearance from

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Biggar. They can't afford to miss successive

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tackles. The initial break is made from that and France reproduce the

:28:01.:28:06.

ball quickly. They've got to stop the offloads as well. That's the

:28:07.:28:08.

thing. Maestri wins. Picamole. A rare

:28:09.:28:20.

mistake by the number 8. But so far Wales have not found the answer to

:28:21.:28:28.

stopping Picamole. Maybe he's providing the answer by himself by

:28:29.:28:37.

getting injured. The gin paws of Maestri.

:28:38.:28:47.

Picamole taking his eye off the ball at the very last moment. What will

:28:48.:28:57.

concern Sean Edwards is the fact that the Welsh line speed is good

:28:58.:29:01.

and there are potential tackles to be made there on the French side of

:29:02.:29:05.

the gain line, they're not being stopped at the point of contact.

:29:06.:29:16.

It's a good place for Wales to have a scrummage, middle of the park. But

:29:17.:29:26.

at the last scrum they gave ground. Wayne Barnes talking about

:29:27.:29:52.

pre-engaging with that. He means you are not supposed to actually make

:29:53.:29:57.

contact with the shoulders. It's a very fine margin. If you watch here,

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I don't know if we can see... Francis three for Wales. Better for

:30:07.:30:14.

Wales. Not better for Wales! Penalty for France.

:30:15.:30:31.

That is the importance of the initial engagements and the initial

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scrum battle because it's now in Wayne Barnes mind that but for Wales

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taking the scrum down, they're likely to go backwards and it was

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actually the French man who dropped first and yet the one that was on

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his knees was penalised. Lopez. On target. France's lead

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grows. 10-0. We've had 15 minutes and Wales have not had any

:31:18.:31:23.

meaningful passage of play yet. They really desperately knead a period or

:31:24.:31:27.

two to three minutes where they keep hold of the ball and at least test

:31:28.:31:31.

the French defence because at the moment they're just having to

:31:32.:31:39.

tackle. Biggar to restart. Fickou is back up. Poor from France. It gets

:31:40.:31:47.

worse because Serin's been knocked flat by Vakatawa. A catalogue of

:31:48.:31:53.

errors there. They've still got possession, but trouble for France's

:31:54.:31:57.

scrum-half. Lopez replaces him for the moment.

:31:58.:32:04.

With a bit of luck, George North can find one of these restarts back into

:32:05.:32:28.

his hands. Making himself a thorough nuisance to the French on the

:32:29.:32:35.

restarts. I think that's just after the collision. Not gone off for a

:32:36.:32:43.

head injury assessment. Ken Owens with the throw. Important to get

:32:44.:32:50.

this right. Alan Wyn Jones down off the top to rest Webb. Williams.

:32:51.:33:00.

Davies. Biggar. Trying to bring George North into play. Leigh

:33:01.:33:02.

Halfpenny. Ken Owens. Webb. Jake Ball. Justin Tipuric came

:33:03.:33:17.

up flat and hard, gets over the advantage line. Biggar. Scott

:33:18.:33:25.

Williams. Lopez. The ball's gone loose. Davies did well to pick the

:33:26.:33:33.

ball up. France claim the turnover. Biggar.

:33:34.:33:43.

Flailing arm knocked the ball on. There was a real chance for Wales

:33:44.:33:47.

then. Wales are claiming that was a

:33:48.:34:04.

deliberate knock-on. It's actually... He did stop the ball

:34:05.:34:10.

getting to George North but it was the outside arm of the tackle.

:34:11.:34:14.

Bearing in mind that the officials did not review the... We are going

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to look at this one. Interesting they didn't look at the one for

:34:19.:34:25.

France which was very similar. While we are viewing this, France have

:34:26.:34:29.

made a change. Trying to put George North in for a try. The left arm.

:34:30.:34:40.

George North says he knows what he's doing, his opponent. It's

:34:41.:34:53.

Nakaitaci's arm. He makes contact, it's whether you consider it was in

:34:54.:34:56.

the motion of trying the make a tackle or whether it was in the

:34:57.:35:00.

disguise motion of knocking it on for me. I think it was the former.

:35:01.:35:03.

Obviously if you are sitting at home and you're a Welsh fan, you'll

:35:04.:35:09.

disagree with me. A change at scrum-half for France. Dupont, the

:35:10.:35:17.

20-year-old is on for Serin. Yellow card. It's a deliberate

:35:18.:35:37.

knock-on for us, it's in a good position but we are not certain a

:35:38.:35:40.

try could have been scored so he goes to the bin but it's no penalty

:35:41.:35:42.

try, OK. Ten minutes in the bin Dan Biggar is giving the ball to

:35:43.:36:23.

leaf Halfpenny. Get three points here, still have the vast majority

:36:24.:36:28.

of that time left to play against 14 men. Interesting that they are

:36:29.:36:31.

saying it probably wasn't going to be a try. They were talking about

:36:32.:36:35.

George North having overrun the ball. If we see that again from a

:36:36.:36:39.

different angle, we'll see whether or not he had overrun the ball

:36:40.:36:44.

because if they decided it was a deliberate knock-on, and there was

:36:45.:36:49.

only one man free outside, then apart from that...

:36:50.:36:55.

Here is Leigh Halfpenny. He's used up almost a minute of the ten

:36:56.:36:57.

preparing for this kick. It's good by Leigh Halfpenny. He

:36:58.:37:26.

stood his ground to check its flight but reward for Leigh Halfpenny in

:37:27.:37:30.

the travelling Welsh fans -- and the travelling Welsh fans. They're on

:37:31.:37:35.

the board. Whether or not it's taken anything off the clock, it's not

:37:36.:37:40.

really a point, it's psychological for Wales who've recorded a score

:37:41.:37:44.

when they have been desperately defending. They are on the score

:37:45.:37:48.

board now and have the remainder of eight minutes or so to play against

:37:49.:37:52.

14 men and they need to make that count. Liam Williams. Jumps under

:37:53.:37:58.

pressure. Nakaitaci was about five metres in

:37:59.:38:04.

front. Rhys Webb going nowhere. Not made a lot of ground, but

:38:05.:38:38.

they'll have the throw-in. You wonder, professional players know

:38:39.:38:42.

that world rugby and all the elite referees are very, very hot when you

:38:43.:38:47.

take a player above the horizontal. They're always going to penalise it

:38:48.:38:56.

and choose to do that, just don't. Alan Wyn Jones wins the lineout.

:38:57.:39:02.

The Welsh captain, the target so far in the lineout. Successful. Very

:39:03.:39:13.

successful. Marching France backwards. Rhys Webb from Ken Owens.

:39:14.:39:20.

Liam Williams in possession. First run for the winger. Jake Ball.

:39:21.:39:28.

Moriarty. Scott Williams behind Jonathan Davies who has to check.

:39:29.:39:37.

Lopez with the tackle. Biggar to Leigh Halfpenny. Lamerat makes life

:39:38.:39:44.

difficult for him. He steals the ball. Davies is back. Chance of a

:39:45.:39:55.

counterattack here. A real chance. Up to the half way line. Scott

:39:56.:40:02.

Williams gets Liam Williams away. Rhys Webb. Rob Evans.

:40:03.:40:17.

Dan Biggar. France's tackling is solid. Scott Williams again. He's

:40:18.:40:36.

lost the ball again. France turning Wales over three or four times in

:40:37.:40:45.

this half. Maestri. Dupont, the new scrum-half.

:40:46.:41:05.

Different approach from Dan Biggar. Warburton with the tackle. France

:41:06.:41:19.

though back in possession. Liam Williams. Able to get away and twist

:41:20.:41:24.

and turn and eventually, he's forced out.

:41:25.:41:34.

A couple of points there. Wales doing some purposeful play by not

:41:35.:41:42.

looking after the ball and contact twice in a row. If you are going to

:41:43.:41:46.

use that tactic of the ball going in the air, the chase has to be better.

:41:47.:41:55.

The initial Welsh tackler getting in there, but not enough support in

:41:56.:41:59.

allowing France to get or the layer on the floor. Rhys Webb does a bit

:42:00.:42:05.

of digging for the ball from the line-out. Looks as if Serin is going

:42:06.:42:08.

to come back on. Guirado dropped the ball. Wales

:42:09.:42:20.

claiming a bit more, just a knock-on says Barnes.

:42:21.:42:30.

All this time, it's been eaten away out of the ten minutes advantage

:42:31.:43:08.

that Wales had. They were a man up. Wales really need to get a score of

:43:09.:43:20.

some sort within the remaining three minutes. Webb gets the ball away

:43:21.:43:25.

from the scrummage. Biggar, change of tactic, drills it towards North

:43:26.:43:28.

who takes it well. Laugh pen write tries to get the pass away. Jonathan

:43:29.:43:36.

Davies gets a hand to it. Danger, picked up by France. $Dulin forces

:43:37.:43:43.

himself to the ground. We've lost Jonathan because of his

:43:44.:44:44.

voice. Martin, your impression so far of the Welsh performance?

:44:45.:44:49.

Totally blown away for the first 15 minutes. They couldnd hand it will

:44:50.:44:53.

physicality of the French. They got back into the game. They seem to be

:44:54.:45:00.

having gaps in the French defence. Big kick for Leigh Halfpenny here.

:45:01.:45:05.

If they can get it back to 10-6, it will be good after being on the back

:45:06.:45:08.

foot for the first 20 minutes. Fabulous strike by Leigh Halfpenny.

:45:09.:45:52.

Beautiful penalty. It was a long way and Halfpenny has success think put

:45:53.:45:59.

Wales up to six points -- successfully put Wales up six

:46:00.:46:03.

points. Wales have taken advantage of that.

:46:04.:46:16.

They've got the score. They are now in an unconverted try. Bearing in

:46:17.:46:20.

mind, the first 15 minutes they were very much on the back foot. They've

:46:21.:46:29.

now stabilised the situation. Liam Williams. Nakaitaci. Warburton.

:46:30.:46:40.

Jonathan Davies. Jake Ball again. Busy carrier in

:46:41.:46:45.

this opening half hour. Dulin. Advantage Wales. It's the

:46:46.:47:14.

French full back's kick going out. That unforced error is a real gift

:47:15.:47:24.

for Wales because it gives them a lineout within the French territory.

:47:25.:47:31.

Couple of times Wales have been moving the ball, it's been stopped

:47:32.:47:34.

by passes that haven't been in front of the man. They turn and it kills

:47:35.:47:41.

the momentum. Tipuric. Moriarty comes into the midfield. Fickou with

:47:42.:47:46.

the tackle. Wales keep possession. Ken Owens. Dan Biggar did well to

:47:47.:47:52.

ride the tackle and France again with a player left on the ground.

:47:53.:47:58.

Lopez. Good slip out of the tackle by Rob Evans, the prop. Whoops. Jake

:47:59.:48:05.

Ball does well to get the ball to Biggar. Scott Williams. Jonathan

:48:06.:48:10.

Davies. Liam Williams. Moriarty outside him. Moriarty claimed he was

:48:11.:48:17.

taken out off the ball. Somebody has to play scrum-half

:48:18.:48:38.

here. Gourdon gets away from Ken Owens. Halfpenny has to chase back

:48:39.:48:47.

deep into the 22. Under real pressure from Serin and Dulin.

:48:48.:48:53.

Fickou. Serin. Lopez. Gourdon. Vakatawa back on the field.

:48:54.:49:16.

Delivering safely. Guirado tackled by his opposite number. Wriggling

:49:17.:49:22.

forward another metre. Warburton with the tackle.

:49:23.:49:34.

Tries to, or thought about slinging the pass out but he didn't. Serin.

:49:35.:49:50.

Great tackle out of the pass. Serin. Fickou. France beginning to take the

:49:51.:49:59.

risks with their pass. North over the ball. And Wales have the

:50:00.:50:06.

penalty. After the slight of hand, it's the heavyweight work of George

:50:07.:50:08.

North that counts. Great work by George north because

:50:09.:50:21.

France managed to get three or four offloads there which always

:50:22.:50:23.

stretches any defence. The work of George North stopped

:50:24.:50:31.

that completely. Right hand side of the frame there,

:50:32.:50:43.

Lopez is going off for another head injury assessment.

:50:44.:50:54.

Guirado coming over to ask questions.

:50:55.:51:06.

Possession from Wales. Moriarty. Webb. To George North. Probably

:51:07.:51:36.

needed to go. France get the big strong arms around.

:51:37.:51:42.

That achieved its purpose, that move. They got in a position that

:51:43.:51:48.

they wanted. Transwar Trinh Duc back on the

:51:49.:52:19.

field. Good to see him back -- Francois Trinh Duc.

:52:20.:52:36.

What is the point about having a low, putting the ball in straight,

:52:37.:52:42.

if you are going to shove it to the number 8's feet. It's not just

:52:43.:52:48.

France. Nearly every team at every level. I do not understand how you

:52:49.:52:52.

can ignore one law completely. Have a discussion, guilty rid of it if

:52:53.:52:57.

you want to, but do it purposely. The referee's saying, no-one cares

:52:58.:53:01.

about this but you, you're insane. Every clubhouse in the country they

:53:02.:53:06.

want to go to and people are screaming about this. You know why

:53:07.:53:09.

they do it, just because they want to get away from reset scrummage

:53:10.:53:16.

after reset scrummage. And they don't understand that if they

:53:17.:53:19.

enforced it, they would have fewer scrums and fewer would collapse.

:53:20.:53:22.

They know better. Not that any of them play in the front row, but

:53:23.:53:26.

there you go. Rant over. There we go. You were right in your judgment.

:53:27.:53:33.

Even the Duke of Edinburgh's noticed it. France with the lineout but it's

:53:34.:53:40.

come straight to the replacement on for Lopez, Trinh Duc. Midfield. Both

:53:41.:53:48.

teams happy to put themselveses in midfield.

:53:49.:53:55.

Serin. Trinh Duc flips it on. Rhys Webb has stolen the ball.

:53:56.:54:08.

Justin Tipuric checks where the clearers are. Misses them. Goes for

:54:09.:54:20.

Ken Owens. Dan Biggar behind Justin Tipuric is directing the troops.

:54:21.:54:23.

Rhys Webb back in the scrum-half position. Dan Biggar keeps the ball

:54:24.:54:29.

in field. Dulin. Nakaitaci outside him. Good tackle by Moriarty.

:54:30.:54:50.

How is this going to bounce? It might go all the way. Mistake by

:54:51.:55:02.

Francois Trinh-Duc who. It's been a conspicuous tack this -- tactic. On

:55:03.:55:15.

that occasion it has paid huge dividends. Alun Wyn Jones standing

:55:16.:55:21.

there, the red church to the right. -- the red shirts. Guirado has been

:55:22.:55:33.

struggling in the first half, we have seen Chat warming up at least

:55:34.:55:49.

twice. He will carry on, Guirado. Chat is a good player, but Guirado

:55:50.:55:58.

the captain. They will want him to stay on, at least for the rest of

:55:59.:56:00.

the first half you would think. That is a better scrum. Moriarty get

:56:01.:56:42.

it to Webb. Scott Williams could not get the pass away. If Wales get

:56:43.:56:47.

quick ball it could be danger, Rhys Webb picks the running option

:56:48.:56:57.

himself. Warburton plays scrum-half. Jonathan Davies. Penalty advantage

:56:58.:57:00.

to Wales, they have a free play here. Rob Evans. Does well to write

:57:01.:57:11.

the first tackle. Biggar. Scott Williams along to Justin Tipuric.

:57:12.:57:19.

Took the ball standing still. Easy tackle for Dulin. No advantage, back

:57:20.:57:27.

to the penalty. Might debate what you would do with this but again I

:57:28.:57:34.

would take the points. Almost half time, go in with next to nothing in

:57:35.:57:46.

it. Number three deemed offside. Leigh Halfpenny with two good

:57:47.:57:53.

penalties to his name. This is the easiest one. It was Serin who tried

:57:54.:58:04.

to... It was well read by Serin, it was an awkward bounce. When the ball

:58:05.:58:08.

comes back later on, as indeed a number of Welsh moves scored from

:58:09.:58:13.

the handling which has not been a surprise as it could be. Get the

:58:14.:58:23.

feeling Wales are creating chances but not being exact in the way they

:58:24.:58:29.

are trying to exploit them. If they click it could be completely

:58:30.:58:32.

different story in terms of their fortunes. They were 10-0 down after

:58:33.:58:39.

a quarter of an hour. This to put them back within a point. Three

:58:40.:58:47.

penalties per Leigh Halfpenny, Wales up to nine, France 10-9 Wales. I

:58:48.:59:02.

think Wales would be relatively happy with that if they go in with

:59:03.:59:06.

it at half-time, it looked early on like they might get buried. Looks

:59:07.:59:13.

like France have changed the kick-off tactic. George North, away,

:59:14.:59:24.

blamed by George North, Ross Moriarty, even better, show and go.

:59:25.:59:32.

Webb, Biggar. Evans. Leigh Halfpenny, Alun Wyn Jones, Jonathan

:59:33.:59:38.

Davies. Bounces kindly for a Liam Williams auntie to get brilliantly.

:59:39.:59:44.

Halfpenny in the action again. All started with the catch by George

:59:45.:59:50.

North. Bounced back, Dan Biggar again. Justin Tipuric into midfield

:59:51.:59:57.

and again, not for the first time Wales surrender possession. That's

:59:58.:00:04.

the fourth time Wales have turned over breakdown ball wide clumsiness

:00:05.:00:11.

around the fringes. France now a bit clumsy with their presentation of

:00:12.:00:14.

the ball but this is the end of the first half. Wayne Barnes blows his

:00:15.:00:23.

whistle. Guirado leads his team off, leading by a single point.

:00:24.:00:30.

You sense this is a game that has not caught fire yet and is waiting

:00:31.:00:37.

for a spark but the first 15 minutes or so were all France, Lamerat

:00:38.:00:46.

finishing underneath the posts. In the first 15 minutes Wales made 30

:00:47.:00:51.

tackles, France just three, in the next 15, France made 37 and Wales

:00:52.:00:59.

just ate, so then match on a knife edge. Conrad Smith alongside us,

:01:00.:01:05.

that is the first half, it is one of those funny things, the first half

:01:06.:01:08.

of Six Nations rugby you have ever seen live in your life so what did

:01:09.:01:16.

you think? It's, to be honest, it's not been the best game in terms of

:01:17.:01:20.

what I have seen in the Six Nations on TV. The execution from both teams

:01:21.:01:26.

has let them down, they have created things early on it was brands and

:01:27.:01:31.

then it was Wales. A few wayward passes, turnovers. Both they have

:01:32.:01:39.

not quite capitalised. What is your verdict? When we have quick balls we

:01:40.:01:45.

can make the difference, but the speed of the game is not good enough

:01:46.:01:50.

so we need to release the ball much quicker into the ruck and then we

:01:51.:01:55.

can create gaps. Things did not look clever for Wales in the first 15

:01:56.:02:00.

minutes so 10-9 at half-time they would take. That first half

:02:01.:02:04.

encapsulates both teams for me, flashes of brilliance but some

:02:05.:02:09.

average rugby as well. Wales were hanging on, brands came out of the

:02:10.:02:14.

blocks, they grew into the game but the execution was poor. Are you a

:02:15.:02:25.

fan of low pay he is good -- of Lopez? Game after game he will

:02:26.:02:33.

improve, he is helped by the forwards, they are really dominant

:02:34.:02:37.

in the scrums, the physicality is there. But the scrum half need to

:02:38.:02:44.

give him the ball quicker and that can bring the line speed quicker. It

:02:45.:02:50.

was a combination of the French physicality and a lovely little chip

:02:51.:02:59.

which led to the try. Confusion between Rhys Webb and Liam Williams

:03:00.:03:02.

about who is supposed to be covering. When the try is scored,

:03:03.:03:07.

it's great execution, great touch from Lopez. If you look at Liam

:03:08.:03:15.

Williams, questioning Rhys Webb, neither really did anything. We knew

:03:16.:03:22.

that the line speed, the Welsh team was good so I think to use that, the

:03:23.:03:27.

kicking part of the game was really good, well done by Lopez. It is

:03:28.:03:34.

tough to defeat, as a nine or 11 you want to be covering that but it's a

:03:35.:03:40.

pinpoint kick. Well executed. The big question, when is a yellow card

:03:41.:03:47.

not a yellow card? As a neutral, Conrad, I thought this was a yellow

:03:48.:03:51.

card for Jonathan Davies, he knows what he's doing, he knows if the

:03:52.:03:59.

ball gets away it's probably in. Did not even review it, Wayne Barnes.

:04:00.:04:03.

Jonathan Davies knows what's happening believe me. I think they

:04:04.:04:08.

were bought yellow cards. It should be a penalty try in my book as well.

:04:09.:04:15.

That might be pushing it a bit, but it's either two yellows or no

:04:16.:04:20.

yellows. If you want to be technical I think the first one is more

:04:21.:04:25.

deliberate, he's actually looking where as you can argue they are his

:04:26.:04:31.

head is down. So you say it's a penalty try to France? It could be.

:04:32.:04:36.

You just want consistency. If you give a reality -- yellow card you

:04:37.:04:44.

have to give a penalty try afterwards. That is a double

:04:45.:04:49.

punishment. Why not? If you give a yellow card that means you had the

:04:50.:04:53.

opportunity to score and it was the same for the Welsh team just before.

:04:54.:04:58.

The old cliche about treating the ball with respect and when you have

:04:59.:05:02.

it hang onto it, Wales are getting turned over a lot. The execution has

:05:03.:05:10.

been really poor at times. France are doing well, they are making a

:05:11.:05:14.

mess of things at rucks, physical men getting over the ball, some of

:05:15.:05:19.

the passing, it's really laboured, really poor, they have been stripped

:05:20.:05:23.

when they are carrying into contact saw the need to look after the ball

:05:24.:05:27.

because when they do that angle to the phases France look a bit ragged

:05:28.:05:30.

and they will give you opportunities. Instead of using the

:05:31.:05:37.

ball we were kicking, I think we should keep it in hand to create

:05:38.:05:43.

some danger. I think both teams have had opportunities after turnovers,

:05:44.:05:47.

immediately after a turnover is an opportunity to pay quick enough but

:05:48.:05:50.

both teams have taken a few seconds to decide what to do and then the

:05:51.:05:55.

opportunity is gone. Looking at France and what they have got in the

:05:56.:05:59.

backs, why is the ball allowed to just sit at the back of a ruck or

:06:00.:06:07.

all and there is no dynamism -- or a maul. Perhaps needs to bring some

:06:08.:06:17.

speed, we are physically dominant against the Welsh, finding some gaps

:06:18.:06:20.

into the defence but if we don't generate quick ball it is hard

:06:21.:06:24.

because the defence gets into position and then it's too late. If

:06:25.:06:30.

that was New Zealand without seeing the obvious, quick turnover like

:06:31.:06:33.

that, it would be somebody into the lines going in the corner because

:06:34.:06:40.

the realisation, the vision, the assessment is sometimes better. It's

:06:41.:06:45.

the knowledge that it's the hardest part of the game to defend. It's

:06:46.:06:51.

that time when the defence is not set, they cannot have any line speed

:06:52.:06:54.

because they have just been attacking. It's the golden time to

:06:55.:06:59.

move the ball and you do not score every time but you at least try.

:07:00.:07:03.

That is why they are world champions. We will come onto that at

:07:04.:07:10.

the end of the game when we can talk the respective merits of New Zealand

:07:11.:07:14.

and England. George North looks like a man reborn. He has got the energy,

:07:15.:07:19.

he has not had many standout runs but it's what he's been doing

:07:20.:07:22.

without the ball which has been impressive. Defended well, looks

:07:23.:07:28.

enthusiastic. Big hits. He's a big man, tough man to bring down but he

:07:29.:07:33.

stood his ground. Great turnover as well and this was a key turnover,

:07:34.:07:38.

brilliant skill from Serin by the way. But getting ahead of the ball

:07:39.:07:44.

like that, if you can do that as a winger it is invaluable. Right at

:07:45.:07:49.

the end you saw how good he is in the aerial battle as well. Agility

:07:50.:07:55.

in the footwork for such a big man, it's outstanding. He's back to top

:07:56.:08:02.

form. Are you a fan of his Conrad? Very much so. When he has the

:08:03.:08:08.

workrate like he has today, it's not one area of the game, it's chasing

:08:09.:08:13.

kicks, when he's doing it all he is going to be a menace on the field.

:08:14.:08:19.

Key area France lead to improved? Definitely around the ruck, need to

:08:20.:08:24.

generate quick ball but I really think we need to exploit, turnover

:08:25.:08:30.

is a bit better. Play behind the defence, we need to make more

:08:31.:08:34.

passes. We have seen some good individuality is. I think in the

:08:35.:08:46.

backs, Fickou has made some gaps but we need to be better. And Wales?

:08:47.:08:54.

Scrambling well but keep the ball and be more clinical to create

:08:55.:08:58.

chances. Earlier today Scotland beat Italy and got a bonus point, later

:08:59.:09:03.

on it is Ireland against England with England going for a second

:09:04.:09:08.

consecutive Grand Slam and trying to do what the women achieved

:09:09.:09:12.

Across the continent there has been a surge of interest in the women's

:09:13.:09:21.

game. They are searching for that Grand Slam.

:09:22.:09:35.

The women in white, Six Nations Grand Slam champions.

:09:36.:10:09.

England are going for a fourth Grand Slam attempt in the course of the

:10:10.:10:16.

Six Nations when they are at the Aviva Stadium in about an hour and

:10:17.:10:17.

15 minutes time. This aristocrat of rugby union

:10:18.:10:33.

grounds is awash with grand slam fever with Ireland seeking to

:10:34.:10:40.

deprive England of a Grand Slam. They are dancing all around

:10:41.:10:41.

Lansdowne road. England not taking their place. What

:10:42.:10:54.

a flourish. What our performance. Martin Johnson's England have

:10:55.:10:55.

scored. Goes on his own, scores for Ireland.

:10:56.:11:09.

O Driscoll. It dashes England's grand slam hopes. Once you have been

:11:10.:11:16.

successful you either them become a great team you become a failure. We

:11:17.:11:20.

can achieve greatness by winning back-to-back Grand Slams. A smiling

:11:21.:11:27.

Eddie Jones, if England played New Zealand next week to wins? In a

:11:28.:11:34.

one-off game at Twickenham it would be close. I think New Zealand, I am

:11:35.:11:42.

obviously biased, I still think they have more in terms of what they can

:11:43.:11:49.

do with the ball, the speed that the play. England on the other hand,

:11:50.:11:55.

they are finding ways to win. They are not always blowing teams off the

:11:56.:12:01.

park but like against Wales and France, it's an amazing attribute

:12:02.:12:05.

for a team. If they played the All Blacks who knows but it would be a

:12:06.:12:10.

great contest and I hope it happens. You all may have answered the

:12:11.:12:16.

question, do you see England winning in Dublin? You saw clips of the

:12:17.:12:19.

Irish, they know how to spoil party. England are so strong, they have not

:12:20.:12:25.

been exhilarating but they have got over the line, I think the bench,

:12:26.:12:28.

the finishers will be the difference. Confidence is there for

:12:29.:12:35.

England, even small margins, against Wales, everyone thought Wales were

:12:36.:12:38.

going to win the game but in the last few minutes England find the

:12:39.:12:44.

belief. Playing against the best against like Australia and South

:12:45.:12:47.

Africa they got the confidence. At this time I think England would win.

:12:48.:12:50.

This is the table at the moment. Scotland currently second place,

:12:51.:13:03.

that is how things stand at half-time with brands in second.

:13:04.:13:22.

The final weekend, the last but one game in the Six Nations

:13:23.:13:31.

championship. It's a try. Lamerat, France open scoring. And lead grows.

:13:32.:13:41.

It's goodbye Leigh Halfpenny. Beautiful penalty. 10-0 down. Three

:13:42.:13:49.

penalties per Leigh Halfpenny, Wales up to nine.

:13:50.:13:57.

1-point game. I must ask you, has this man got much broadcast

:13:58.:14:05.

experience, he is a regular contributor to the French rugby

:14:06.:14:09.

special which must be stressful, how does that work? Especially difficult

:14:10.:14:13.

at the moment when my French is not quite what I would like it to be. I

:14:14.:14:19.

have a translator, the questions are asked, in French and it is

:14:20.:14:24.

translated in my ear. There are a few nervous seconds as I wait for

:14:25.:14:29.

the translator to tell me the question. The benches and who could

:14:30.:14:37.

come on in the last 20 minutes could be key. If we look at who will be on

:14:38.:14:42.

the bench, it's the usual guys from a Welsh point of view. From our

:14:43.:14:49.

perspective, we have no finishers, we have no bench, we all may now

:14:50.:14:55.

have Brian Moore and Eddie Butler. COMMENTATOR: It's a ruthless

:14:56.:15:00.

business, one croaky voice and he is gone. Lopez back on the field. No

:15:01.:15:19.

changes on the Welsh side. Serin is also back at scrum-half. Liam

:15:20.:15:25.

Williams comes forward and claims the restart. Last half of the Six

:15:26.:15:38.

Nations campaign for these teams. Jonathan Davies. Down towards

:15:39.:15:51.

Picamoles. Dulin sends it high, Biggar goes up. Wayne Barnes waves

:15:52.:15:59.

play on. Here is Lopez and Picamoles.

:16:00.:16:06.

Gets through the tackle, Slimani. Gael Fickou, Halfpenny stepping

:16:07.:16:19.

across him, does very well to foil that attack. Rhys Webb arrives. Ken

:16:20.:16:29.

Owens. Presents the ball. Lopez cannot get past. Grabs him and

:16:30.:16:51.

does an excellent job of delaying the off-load. France have to come

:16:52.:17:03.

from a stationary start and Gael Fickou does well.

:17:04.:17:13.

Sanconnie a newcomer to the French back row.

:17:14.:17:25.

Wayne Barnes seeing play on. Well read by a Rhys Webb. Bouncing ball.

:17:26.:17:38.

Danger signs, Wales pick up scraps, George North. Maestri try to get him

:17:39.:17:49.

down. Warburton, to Jonathan Davies, Liam Williams. Out of play. And we

:17:50.:17:59.

have a Welsh player injured. Alun Wyn Jones. The captain doubled up.

:18:00.:18:06.

Ribs? Wayne Barnes explaining he's not

:18:07.:18:15.

going to give a penalty for holding the man.

:18:16.:18:22.

Unfortunately that pass is so indicative of the way both sides

:18:23.:18:35.

have been playing, making unforced errors which have constantly stop to

:18:36.:18:41.

the forward momentum. It was a good defensive set by Wales. France

:18:42.:18:46.

making no real headway. This is very brave by Leigh Halfpenny. The Welsh

:18:47.:18:56.

captain is still down. If Wales can just find the passage

:18:57.:19:19.

of play where they are precise the gaps will open and they have the

:19:20.:19:23.

beating of the French team. We shall restart with a line-out.

:19:24.:19:35.

Guirado to throw. From the touchline to the back of

:19:36.:19:52.

the. Picamoles going nowhere, good tackle

:19:53.:20:05.

by Tipuric and Moriarty together. Biggar will have a chance to go

:20:06.:20:25.

either way or high for the sky. Leigh Halfpenny impersonate. Dulin

:20:26.:20:30.

wins the aerial battle. Williams, Dan Biggar a long way

:20:31.:20:53.

infield. Lopez. The ball out of play. A bit of ping-pong. Wasn't it

:20:54.:20:57.

entertaining! Such an important part of the game,

:20:58.:21:11.

kick and chase. The ability to do that. Gael Fickou. Alun Wyn Jones

:21:12.:21:27.

gets it down. Rhys Webb, certainly not now, Ross Moriarty in trouble.

:21:28.:21:33.

Scott Williams does well. But it's a penalty, Wales Crossing... Quickly

:21:34.:21:47.

taken. Gael Fickou, they have somehow made a mess of it. Dulin

:21:48.:21:56.

looks at the referee, everyone looks at the referee, Leigh Halfpenny

:21:57.:21:58.

looks at the referee. It's a line-out. There are players down.

:21:59.:22:16.

That was untidy, slightly short. Guirado with the fingers and from

:22:17.:22:18.

that moment Wales were in real trouble. There is a case for a

:22:19.:22:32.

deliberate knock-on. Looked rather similar to the one which France

:22:33.:22:37.

didn't get away with. Want to be consistent. Looked to me as though

:22:38.:22:49.

it was an attempted tackle. Guy Noves slightly more impassive than

:22:50.:22:53.

the men in the stands. Rhys Webb receiving attention on the Welsh

:22:54.:23:03.

side. Scott Williams coming away with the ball, it is Rhys Webb...

:23:04.:23:21.

Peter Fitzgibbon the television match official today.

:23:22.:23:37.

Guirado back on his feet. The French forwards make their way towards the

:23:38.:23:51.

far touchline. Doesn't seem to have been any requests for any reviews of

:23:52.:23:58.

anything. Perhaps the injuries have disturbed the flow of the judicial

:23:59.:23:59.

process? It's going to be a scrum down. Just

:24:00.:24:17.

knock-on. There has been inconsistency with what the official

:24:18.:24:22.

and his team have and have not looked that. Apologies if you heard

:24:23.:24:28.

any bad language, I don't know why I am apologising, it was not me. But

:24:29.:24:30.

there you are. Serin. First seven metres away from

:24:31.:24:45.

the Welsh line. Looked vulnerable. France will

:24:46.:25:00.

presumably reset and have another go.

:25:01.:25:11.

Tomas Francis. Once France got the momentum there, irrespective of

:25:12.:25:19.

where the ball was fed, the fact is that they are going to get the

:25:20.:25:21.

penalty. Still seven metres. France six and a

:25:22.:25:55.

bit out. -- perhaps six and a bit out. France have conceded the

:25:56.:26:01.

penalty this time. That will be very badly received by the French crowd.

:26:02.:26:05.

Not welcomed by these players. On the right hand side, completely

:26:06.:26:51.

fractured. That's why the scrum side went in favour of France.

:26:52.:27:12.

Dulin. Well tackled by Williams. Bit closer to the touchline. Tremendous

:27:13.:28:34.

following up footwork. We are off again. Jonathan Davies.

:28:35.:28:44.

Jonathan Davies. Biggar. Scott Williams. France can break away.

:28:45.:29:22.

Advantage over Leigh Halfpenny. Take it and set off. Excellent tackle.

:29:23.:29:34.

Good work by Tipuric. Fantastic player. Alan Wyn Jones is down

:29:35.:29:50.

again, a long way from the action. Ross Moriarty.

:29:51.:30:02.

Pressure on Vakatawa. Wales will have the foot in. Picamole looks

:30:03.:30:08.

disappointed. Vakatawa looks disappointed. We have a stoppage.

:30:09.:30:14.

It's Jake Ball, not Alan Wyn Jones. Liam Williams is down too. Martin,

:30:15.:30:20.

your views? I think the word is scrappy. It's physical but no side

:30:21.:30:25.

can keep the ball and go through. The decision by France earlier on,

:30:26.:30:28.

simple three points in front of the post, they've taken the quick one,

:30:29.:30:32.

and Mr Barnes, I don't think he's the favourite person in this stadium

:30:33.:30:37.

at this moment when it comes to the French, so yes, hasn't caught light

:30:38.:30:47.

in the second half. Luke Charteris comes on. Alan Wyn Jones is coming

:30:48.:30:53.

off and he is carrying that left arm. Sam Warburton will take over

:30:54.:31:02.

the captaincy. Very uneven effort from Wales in

:31:03.:31:18.

this respect. Defensively, their back row and inside defenders are

:31:19.:31:21.

denying France any momentum at all at the moment. They're making the

:31:22.:31:26.

ball very slow, they're doing a very good job. On the other hand, again

:31:27.:31:32.

when they're going forward, unforced errors are undoing everything that

:31:33.:31:35.

they're working for in defence. If they can just get that accuracy,

:31:36.:31:42.

then they'll cause a lot of problems. But when you're making

:31:43.:31:46.

those errors, it constantly undoes any good work you're doing.

:31:47.:32:03.

Leigh Halfpenny taking over responsibility. Taulupe sorry,

:32:04.:32:39.

Faletau and Roberts prepare to come on. Leigh Halfpenny is going for

:32:40.:32:42.

goal. Struck with a force. This within the

:32:43.:33:09.

Halfpenny range. And this to take the lead.

:33:10.:33:30.

Long enough. Straight enough. Wales take the lead.

:33:31.:33:40.

And everybody but everybody applauds. Fuad the difference for

:33:41.:33:47.

the angle and the margin it went over by, that was a 55 metre kick.

:33:48.:33:59.

That constantly gives the forwards hope. If you can win a penalty

:34:00.:34:04.

anywhere near the French half, Leigh Halfpenny is likely to do that.

:34:05.:34:09.

There's a huge psychological flip for you. Conversely, defenders know

:34:10.:34:13.

they can't cheat and I thinkth infringe.

:34:14.:34:25.

Surged forward. Lamerat. Ball arrives to complete the tackle.

:34:26.:34:38.

Penalty to Wales. Good work by Warburton. Liam

:34:39.:35:04.

Williams trying to compete. -- trying to compete with a man like

:35:05.:35:09.

Liam Williams. Sam Warburton over the ball. The Welsh have done very

:35:10.:35:21.

well. Lamerat is going for France in the Welsh 22.

:35:22.:35:33.

Son Connie coming from the French back room. Sonconnie. He is coming

:35:34.:35:46.

off. And his replacement. Started in the

:35:47.:36:05.

starting 15 for France. It's one of so many changes by France.

:36:06.:36:22.

So France change their front row. Ken Owens with the throw. Justin

:36:23.:36:32.

Tipuric. Wales have to be careful. Good work

:36:33.:36:56.

by France. It was because Justin Tipuric did his job. He took the

:36:57.:37:01.

ball cleanly and the Welsh supporting players not working quick

:37:02.:37:05.

enough. Couldn't get the ball to the back.

:37:06.:37:17.

Guirado throws and France lose again. Long from Rhys Webb. Dan

:37:18.:37:23.

Biggar ships it on to Jamie robbers. Jonathan Davies. Leigh Halfpenny has

:37:24.:37:31.

to take it further behind him. Williams. Tipuric. The prop does

:37:32.:37:37.

well. That wasn't a promising start for him. Webb. Davies. Jamie

:37:38.:37:40.

Roberts. Dan Biggar. To George North. Pass by

:37:41.:38:02.

Biggar. Switch of play. Jonathan Davies. Wales setting up camp in

:38:03.:38:06.

this corner. Dulin comes away. Level-footed. Pursued by Jonathan

:38:07.:38:14.

Davies. Dulins capes. -- left-footed. Lamerat. France risking

:38:15.:38:22.

things. Picamole. Charteris arrives to try to hold the number 8 up.

:38:23.:38:26.

Picamole delivers. Serin. Lamerat again. Gets the ball

:38:27.:38:40.

over. Williams did well to cover two French runners then. Bangs on to the

:38:41.:38:51.

winner's ankle. Thunders to the 22. Scruffily delivered. Lamerat. Even

:38:52.:39:00.

when he's lying down, Williams manages to make a tackle. Par pass

:39:01.:39:06.

from Lamerat. And that's even worse. Charteris. Two Giants meet. France

:39:07.:39:13.

with numbers. George North has to cover too. Does well, George North.

:39:14.:39:16.

Still doing well. Low pee. -- Lopez. Atone owe. --

:39:17.:39:26.

Atonio. Io. -- Atonio. Halfpenny came

:39:27.:40:06.

forward. Lopez won it. Faletau. Maestri across the field.

:40:07.:40:11.

Lopez. Lamerat at speed. And it's ripped out of his grasp. Only

:40:12.:40:22.

towards the other French players. Slightly on the back foot now and

:40:23.:40:29.

Gourdon tries to restore forward motion. Ball goes out eventually.

:40:30.:40:35.

Beautiful kick from a position where France were starting to be put under

:40:36.:40:42.

pressure. Succeeding in reducing France's options all round by

:40:43.:40:48.

slowing the ball down to the point where it's scleroitc actually. No

:40:49.:40:51.

option but to get it down the field. We pause because Jake Ball is

:40:52.:41:13.

receiving attention. Ken Owens can take his time up field. Jake Ball I

:41:14.:41:22.

imagine will be going off for yet another head injury assessment.

:41:23.:41:25.

That's the captain already off the field.

:41:26.:41:40.

Jake Ball coming off the field and Samson Lee is coming on.

:41:41.:41:53.

Tom Francis comes off. For Samson Lee.

:41:54.:42:10.

Full contingent in the lineout. Ken Owens is going to... Wig problem for

:42:11.:42:19.

Wales at the moment now. Lineout severe liqueur tailed. Fortunately

:42:20.:42:28.

for them, Justin Tipuric is a good lineout forward -- big problem for

:42:29.:42:32.

them now. Wales in no hurry. Scott Baldwin. He is going to play out of

:42:33.:42:37.

position presumably. Justin Tipuric does win under

:42:38.:42:56.

pressure. Wondering if Ross Moriarty is off

:42:57.:43:16.

the field as well. Rhys Webb. High. They checked their line and managed

:43:17.:43:21.

to get the tacklers into the French winger. Lamerat. Turns in and tries

:43:22.:43:25.

to go out. Up to half way. Atonio. Faletau goes low on the big

:43:26.:43:41.

man. Chouly. And Chouly is bundled out of touch. Good defensive work

:43:42.:43:48.

again. The way that France moved that ball was just so direct. It

:43:49.:43:54.

provided Wales with the tackle and it wasn't going to go anywhere.

:43:55.:44:07.

Luke Charteris is the tallest. Again putting their lineout.

:44:08.:44:17.

Up goes chart Rick. -- Charteris. Rob Evans clears up for Wales.

:44:18.:44:27.

Scott Baldwin the winger down. Atonio. Charteris.

:44:28.:45:01.

Superb steal by Falcao. Liam Williams on the break -- Faletau.

:45:02.:45:09.

Williams with the follow-up tackle manages to get a hand on Dulin.

:45:10.:45:15.

Wriggles free. Away from Rhys Webb. Ken Owens makes a very important

:45:16.:45:23.

tackle. Nakaitaci to Lopez. Biggar and Halfpenny turn and chase back.

:45:24.:45:26.

Halfpenny into the 22. Stays within the bounds of the 22

:45:27.:45:44.

and doesn't make much ground despite he has all the time. The highlight

:45:45.:45:49.

of that was Tipuric's handling. He's a forward.

:45:50.:45:58.

Faletau has come on for Moriarty, of course. Wales are a bit stuck

:45:59.:46:05.

without specialist second rows now with Jake Ball off and Alan Wyn

:46:06.:46:10.

Jones on. Scott Baldwin, a hooker is on.

:46:11.:46:14.

Probably not just a lack of numbers, players having to boost in different

:46:15.:46:21.

positions. They are not used to the gaps in the lineout if they don't

:46:22.:46:24.

get it exact as well. Comes to France. Untidily. It comes to France

:46:25.:46:33.

but illegally. Penalty for Wales. I don't think Leigh Halfpenny will do

:46:34.:46:39.

anything other than indicate... Vahaamahina taking Justin Tipuric.

:46:40.:46:52.

There it is, quite clear. Taking him by the hand. Didn't have to be much.

:46:53.:46:59.

That's all he needed was to take the inside arm.

:47:00.:47:04.

And the French crowd don't like it. But they should be directing their

:47:05.:47:19.

boos at the offender. Look at it this way, Wales, a second row down.

:47:20.:47:24.

It's a lineout. Only three or four metres into the French half. Would

:47:25.:47:30.

it matter if they win a ball? Get out and defend.

:47:31.:47:38.

They have huge signs at the Principality Stadium which says

:47:39.:47:43.

"respect the quicker". They don't have them in France. -- "respect the

:47:44.:47:53.

kicker". They don't have them in France.

:47:54.:47:59.

Halfpenny. Does he like it? He does. He does indeed!

:48:00.:48:17.

. They are in this position because of their defensive efforts.

:48:18.:48:30.

Lamerat comes off. Trinh Duc is back on. It's an odd looking Welsh pack.

:48:31.:48:45.

That goes wrong for Luke Charteris and right for Nakaitaci. Warburton

:48:46.:48:52.

and Tipuric hold up the French captain. Rhys Webb. Atonio delivers.

:48:53.:48:58.

The other switch of play. Maestri. The surge by the players, the surge

:48:59.:49:04.

by the crowd. Chouly waits. Picamole right with

:49:05.:49:22.

him. Penalty advantage to France. What do France do? Posts. Saw the

:49:23.:49:53.

passage of play there from France which is potentially II Wales in

:49:54.:50:00.

this respect. Wales have now got to reshuffle the pack with a lot of

:50:01.:50:05.

their players. Certainly with Moriarty, the great defender. They

:50:06.:50:09.

are in danger of being overpowered by a big French side. If they could

:50:10.:50:15.

hold the line, make the tackles as they were doing, and stop them at

:50:16.:50:20.

the point of contact, they'll be OK. If they don't and France get behind

:50:21.:50:28.

them, they're in trouble. Luke Charteris losing out to the ball

:50:29.:50:33.

coming out of the sky. Nakaitaci took full advantage. The gap down to

:50:34.:50:39.

two points. Dan Biggar. George North chasing.

:50:40.:50:49.

Quickly to Lopez. That shows the value of a diligent

:50:50.:51:04.

chase, although North wasn't going to get the ball, he kept the

:51:05.:51:08.

pressure on. Stepped back inside and eventually they sliced the ball.

:51:09.:51:10.

Persistence paid off. Alan Wyn Jones is the obvious

:51:11.:51:18.

lineout captain. Wales will have to reassess.

:51:19.:51:27.

Charteris. Samson Lee. Tries to slip it back to

:51:28.:51:36.

Sam Warburton. France have to be careful not to

:51:37.:52:13.

give away the penalty. Tipuric picks up. Straight to ground again. Rob

:52:14.:52:31.

Evans goes to ground. Faletau. Tipuric. Ken Owens.

:52:32.:52:38.

Jonathan Davies. The 22 metre line. Dan Biggar.

:52:39.:52:46.

Good footwork by Justin Tipuric. Half a metre. That 22 miter line

:52:47.:53:16.

again. He's done very well. -- 22 metre. Sam Warburton carries on the

:53:17.:53:19.

good work. Faletau scrum-half. Ken Owens picks up. Wales creeping

:53:20.:53:36.

forward. High tackle. No arm out from the referee. A lot of Red

:53:37.:53:40.

Shirts around there. Dan Biggar. Can't get the pass away. France over

:53:41.:53:53.

the ball. It is a high tackle. And again, the crowd express their

:53:54.:53:56.

displeasure. High tackle though. You saw it. They won't be happy because

:53:57.:54:03.

Ken Owens was on his way down and therefore only a penalty, but the

:54:04.:54:08.

contact here was high. France of not help their cause at

:54:09.:54:38.

all by penalties for that, grabbing the arm at the line-out, things

:54:39.:54:45.

which need not have occurred. Leigh Halfpenny has made them pay and

:54:46.:54:48.

presumably now will for every indiscretion. Scott Baldwin is

:54:49.:55:02.

bleeding into the towel. Rob Howley, man management at its most delicate.

:55:03.:55:10.

Tomas Francis should be OK to come on. Leigh Halfpenny has landed his

:55:11.:55:15.

sixth penalty, Wales up to 18, France 13.

:55:16.:55:32.

Scott Baldwin going off, Ross Moriarty looked like he was out of

:55:33.:55:42.

action with his shoulder but he's coming back on. In an ideal world

:55:43.:55:48.

they would not want him going back, he definitely was injured. But had

:55:49.:55:56.

to go back on. Lopez changes direction. It's a knock-on, France

:55:57.:56:05.

will have they put in at the scrummage. If you our friend he will

:56:06.:56:14.

want to put as much pressure as you can on the scrum, players playing

:56:15.:56:18.

out of position, try to win the penalty and stick it in the corner

:56:19.:56:23.

and try to drive the ball over. Who goes away? Rob Evans... Samson

:56:24.:56:37.

Lee... Justin Tipuric on the openside.

:56:38.:56:56.

And one DuPont is on at scrum-half for France. A 5-point lead for

:56:57.:57:12.

Wales. 73 minutes gone. Robbie Fowler toe

:57:13.:57:34.

in the second row. -- Taulupe Faletau in the second row. Lopez,

:57:35.:57:46.

long to Gael Fickou. Knock-on. It's gone backwards says the referee.

:57:47.:57:50.

Wales are played possession, Williams over the ball. France

:57:51.:57:56.

counter ruck, Williams tries to counter. It's untidy. Justin

:57:57.:57:59.

Tipuric, to Moriarty. Wales have a penalty. His job was

:58:00.:58:19.

not made easy, the ball bulleted at him, a simple soft hand pass would

:58:20.:58:25.

have worked. But it was made as difficult as it possibly could have

:58:26.:58:32.

been. Dan Biggar in no rush. Wales again will have to work out who

:58:33.:58:43.

jumps away, who does what. They have options. A lot of credit to the

:58:44.:58:49.

Welsh scrum for not conceding a penalty. Could easily have done so.

:58:50.:58:56.

Could be very different. That ball should have been floated in front of

:58:57.:59:08.

him. No need. Even so, Moriarty cannot quite hold it. Scrum

:59:09.:59:12.

advantage to France. France in possession. Dupont. Scrum, France

:59:13.:59:32.

defeat. -- France to feed. The French pack has not got any smaller.

:59:33.:59:50.

Of the starters only a few still on. A few tackles made. Justin Tipuric

:59:51.:59:55.

at the top of that but it only tells half the story, the amount of work

:59:56.:59:59.

he has done around the field, in the line-out, his ball handling and

:00:00.:00:05.

tackling have been outstanding. All this time ticking off the clock.

:00:06.:00:10.

Wayne Barnes has stopped the clock for this little chat.

:00:11.:00:37.

Dupont leads the scrum. Then Lopez. Dulin. Jonathan Davies makes a

:00:38.:00:55.

backtracking tackle. Picamoles had to reach for it. Tipuric. Wales hold

:00:56.:01:06.

up the replacement three quarters. And steal the ball and pump it

:01:07.:01:10.

downfield and France have to chase back. That is unlucky. France have a

:01:11.:01:19.

scrum all the way back in the Welsh half. Rhys Webb is down injured and

:01:20.:01:28.

that looks like a groin. Desperately disappointing if you only Welsh fan,

:01:29.:01:35.

tremendous ripping work the right tactic to put boot to ball, just

:01:36.:01:45.

overcooked it. This is excellent stripping work, Rhys Webb and Dan

:01:46.:01:51.

Biggar, Sam Warburton arrives. Does brilliantly. Only three minutes

:01:52.:01:59.

left, France need a converted try to win. The Welsh pack need to do a

:02:00.:02:05.

similar job they have in the last two scrums, just keep it steady.

:02:06.:02:42.

Two and a half minutes to go. Dupont again. Moriarty. Burroughs himself

:02:43.:02:58.

into the tackle. France inside the Welsh 22. This is Le Devedec.

:02:59.:03:17.

Picamoles, raw strength. France within ten metres. Into the last two

:03:18.:03:28.

minutes. This switch of play by Lopez, on his own. Five metres

:03:29.:03:35.

short. Dupont. Twists and turns, Wales hold him out. Three metres

:03:36.:03:37.

short. Yuan Huggett claims the penalty but

:03:38.:04:00.

the referee says play on. The replacement hooker has a go, Chat.

:04:01.:04:10.

Sam Warburton near the line makes a tackle. Penalty advantage to France.

:04:11.:04:22.

One foot, no advantage. France have the penalty. They need try to draw,

:04:23.:04:32.

a converted try win. Do you take the scrum or kick to the corner for a

:04:33.:04:41.

line-out? You can sense the exhaustion. In the end I think you

:04:42.:04:47.

go for the corner because you have no idea which way the referee will

:04:48.:04:56.

go. Could easily give a penalty the other way with the line-out.

:04:57.:05:03.

Automatic catch and drive, if you get it right. France are going for

:05:04.:05:11.

the scrum. Scrum option. Sam Warburton goes

:05:12.:05:26.

round the team one last effort Wales. The Welsh players encouraging

:05:27.:05:33.

each other. This is a do or die effort, the last play of the game.

:05:34.:05:38.

The last three scrums they have done very well to keep them steady.

:05:39.:05:45.

Taulupe Faletau up in the second row.

:05:46.:05:55.

Free kick France. Too much weight. Your decision, your decision, would

:05:56.:06:18.

you like to scrum? OK no problem. Reset the scrummage. The clock is

:06:19.:06:24.

stopped. Hold your weight, Wales. Scrum option. It hasn't been a

:06:25.:06:37.

classic but there has been drama. Yes. A very uneven and average game.

:06:38.:06:52.

But one last effort. Dupont feeds the scrum, it goes down. Wayne

:06:53.:06:58.

Barnes resets. Wayne Barnes knows this is the last play of the game

:06:59.:07:02.

and he's going to have to be very sure of who is or isn't taking it

:07:03.:07:06.

down if he is going to award penalties. Find your side, good.

:07:07.:07:17.

It's not long that a proper play for 80 minutes but Evans and Owens have

:07:18.:07:24.

gone the full distance -- that a prop will play for 80 minutes.

:07:25.:07:34.

Are you injured? Are you injured? Are you injured? Are you OK, fine.

:07:35.:07:42.

He's not injured. He's just telling me he's not injured. Can only watch

:07:43.:07:51.

from the sidelines. Ten seconds left of normal time.

:07:52.:08:18.

This is France's chance. We have to pause yet again. We are into

:08:19.:08:21.

overtime but we shall have the scrum. I need this higher and I need

:08:22.:08:27.

the space. I need you higher and I need the space. Higher is good for

:08:28.:08:34.

Wales. It depends whether the French get any momentum. Once a side gets

:08:35.:08:58.

going forward. It's one of those. That's just an amazing coincidence!

:08:59.:09:08.

One second. Do you think you need to head assessment. As a doctor you say

:09:09.:09:17.

they need a head assessment? It depends how cynical you are. The

:09:18.:09:23.

doctor of the French team has told me... You fear the worst. But the

:09:24.:09:30.

doctor actually said he needs an assessment. Far be it from me to say

:09:31.:09:45.

that is cheating. He is not even staying to have a look, he has to be

:09:46.:09:50.

assessed so down the tunnel he goes. The only person not really

:09:51.:09:55.

interested in what happens here. The final play of the game, final play

:09:56.:09:58.

of the campaign for France and Wales.

:09:59.:10:07.

All comes the French drive. Picamoles can get the pass away.

:10:08.:10:12.

Wales swoop. Picamoles. Driven back. no way through. Ken Owens gets a

:10:13.:10:46.

hand over the ball. Dupont. Short again. The ball delivered to Dupont.

:10:47.:11:03.

Dupont France so close to the line and still not over. It's a penalty

:11:04.:11:13.

advantage for France. The ball is going to be held up there, but

:11:14.:11:22.

France will have the penalty. Yellow card it's going to be, it's not the

:11:23.:11:28.

final play. Who is going to be sent to the sin-bin? Samson Lee by the

:11:29.:11:41.

looks of it. Wales will half to bring on, France go for the

:11:42.:11:44.

scrummage option and Wales will have to bring on a front row forward. On

:11:45.:11:53.

the game goes. This tremendous goal-line stand. Uncontested

:11:54.:12:01.

scrummage. If they do not have a suitable replacement. Tomas Francis

:12:02.:12:07.

is getting ready. Samson Lee in the bin. Send on a hooker, uncontested

:12:08.:12:34.

scrum do you think? The French will not like it but they found a way to

:12:35.:12:44.

bring Slimani on so they cannot complain. Was he injured or was he

:12:45.:13:05.

replaced? Start limping. I think he was replaced that he might need a

:13:06.:13:11.

head injury assessment. Could give him a clip round the ear. He is not

:13:12.:13:19.

happy at all. That looks like a very injured Tomas Francis, Wales will

:13:20.:13:30.

say. They are making him come back on. Scrum, you need to bring three

:13:31.:13:43.

back on. Tomas Francis is having a word with Robin McBride. Who's

:13:44.:13:47.

having a word with Scott Baldwin who's having a little practice at

:13:48.:13:54.

the scrummage. The Welsh forwards coach. You have to have a suitable

:13:55.:14:07.

replacement. But if a man has been substituted as opposed to take an

:14:08.:14:12.

offer for injury then Wayne Barnes is right, he has got to come back

:14:13.:14:20.

on. But we saw with Slimani... Tom Francis, specialist tight head prop

:14:21.:14:25.

is back in position, it will be a contested scrum. Wales now only have

:14:26.:14:36.

seven forwards. This is a bizarre end to the game. Who comes off?

:14:37.:14:55.

France are trying to make a change. A certain farcical element to the

:14:56.:15:01.

end of this game. This carries on much longer and the yellow card can

:15:02.:15:09.

come back on. Scott Baldwin... He is still bleeding. We are looking at

:15:10.:15:22.

the boards. Leigh Halfpenny... Is coming off. So Wales will have the

:15:23.:15:32.

full contingent of forwards, eight forwards on the field but one light

:15:33.:15:41.

in the three quarters line. So, France trailed by five, 15 Frenchmen

:15:42.:15:45.

against 14 Welshmen. What will happen now is he will do

:15:46.:15:54.

them for not straight. No you won't! Penalty against Wales. Too much

:15:55.:16:09.

weight. France obviously opt for the same

:16:10.:16:25.

scrummage they have already opted for.

:16:26.:16:34.

On we go. 87 minutes just about on the clock. Dupont feeds... The

:16:35.:16:57.

whistle goes again. Anyone who tells me that modern day scrums are fine I

:16:58.:17:05.

will just refer them to this. 87 minutes on the clock, this half has

:17:06.:17:08.

been going on for well over 50 minutes in real-time. Who wouldn't

:17:09.:17:16.

pay ?84 to watch this? Coming up to 88 minutes. The Welsh

:17:17.:17:22.

coach Rob Howley. Penalty to France quickly taken by

:17:23.:18:03.

Picamoles. Short. try which will draw them level.

:18:04.:18:48.

Going wide. Going wider. Cannot get through. The gone loose but it will

:18:49.:18:55.

be brought back for the penalty. That's a huge decision because if it

:18:56.:18:58.

had not happened Wales would have won the game by now. 89 minutes. The

:18:59.:19:19.

decision of Maestri is... Scrummage again. Let's hope this one doesn't

:19:20.:19:24.

take eight minutes. Evans in the last scrum did well

:19:25.:19:42.

against Slimani because he got an angle, Evans managed to hold him up.

:19:43.:19:52.

Have to do that again. Same position, a bit more room on the

:19:53.:19:57.

side which Sam Warburton has to cover. The posts in the background.

:19:58.:20:08.

They are all out left, no Welsh players on that side.

:20:09.:20:16.

Which means Wales potentially are two defenders down if France do

:20:17.:20:27.

decide to move the ball left. Off we go again. 90 minutes on the clock.

:20:28.:20:33.

Picamoles, France have to use it. They come left. Held. It's another

:20:34.:20:46.

penalty advantage for France. Dupont. Cannot get clear. France is

:20:47.:20:58.

still in possession. The hooker replacement, Chat. Balls gone loose.

:20:59.:21:12.

Feel free to still going. Still playing advantage I think. At what

:21:13.:21:23.

point does advantage end? Back we go. Back we go to the penalty. 91

:21:24.:21:31.

minutes on the clock. You have hardy few penalties. One more penalty and

:21:32.:21:42.

you might go down to 13 men. Wales want to stand up at the scrum, not

:21:43.:21:46.

engage, run the clock down and get the extra man back on. As part of

:21:47.:21:58.

the subplot, 30 seconds and counting down to the return of Samson Lee.

:21:59.:22:06.

And Leigh Halfpenny behind him. Meanwhile who would be a coach? Back

:22:07.:22:16.

to the full complement. Leigh Halfpenny 15, Samson Lee 18.

:22:17.:22:29.

Utterly bizarre. You're making it clear there has been a bite but we

:22:30.:22:40.

don't know where it is when it is. An allegation of a bite. Is Rob

:22:41.:22:49.

Evans the better man is just cramp? Is it cramp brought on by a bite?

:22:50.:22:55.

There has been an accusation of a bite. And there is clearly a mark.

:22:56.:22:59.

He said it's the last phase so we know where it might be, we are going

:23:00.:23:05.

to look at that on the TMO and if he has done it himself we will deal

:23:06.:23:11.

with that. If he has done it himself?! LAUGHTER

:23:12.:23:17.

That would just about sum up the day wouldn't it? Allegation of a bite by

:23:18.:23:26.

George North. The last but one breakdown. 93 minutes played and

:23:27.:23:37.

were going to have another stoppage. We have to look at the situation.

:23:38.:23:45.

Tackle made on the full-back and then he's been bitten. George North

:23:46.:23:55.

has made a tackle on the full-back, in the most bizarre circumstances,

:23:56.:23:59.

we are all looking for a bite. There is clearly a bite mark on his arm.

:24:00.:24:04.

Jonathan Davies has just written the word shambles down, which is fair I

:24:05.:24:10.

think. Best contribution of the day from you I think. Goodness me, 94

:24:11.:24:17.

minutes and we are looking for a bite. This may take some finding.

:24:18.:24:32.

Peter Fitzgibbon no doubt will be looking for the tackle.

:24:33.:24:39.

Not being shown on the replay. No conclusionive footage. Play on.

:24:40.:25:11.

Here we go again. France. Penalty advantage being played.

:25:12.:26:05.

Reset the scrummage. I didn't look at what the longest game ever was in

:26:06.:26:23.

my research. I didn't he'd be coming on in the

:26:24.:26:39.

97th minute of the game! Rob Evans is going. And we are going to stop,

:26:40.:26:44.

everybody. We are going to stop again.

:26:45.:26:51.

We have an issue with the fourth official.

:26:52.:27:10.

There is an issue or not... It appears there is not. Play on.

:27:11.:27:31.

Smith on for a scrummage in the 98th minute!

:27:32.:27:44.

. France go for the line. It's a penalty. Again, same thing. Although

:27:45.:27:56.

Wales were going backwards, the first player to come out of the

:27:57.:28:03.

scrum... That's two, next one goes.

:28:04.:28:08.

Presumably it will be a penalty try. But who are they going to decide to

:28:09.:28:13.

bin when the French mayer first went up, who is responsible for that?

:28:14.:28:47.

Off we go again. Dupont. More control. Same old thing. Down goes

:28:48.:28:51.

the scrum. Dupont held. Faletau back on his feet. Charteris

:28:52.:28:57.

tries to disrupt. It's another advantage. Dupont goes.

:28:58.:29:10.

Can't reach out for the line. Goes to the bin for kicking the ball

:29:11.:29:40.

on the floor... Biggar is going to go to the bin.

:29:41.:29:45.

Dan Biggar is heading for the bin in the 100th minute of the game. If

:29:46.:29:50.

France don't score... France over the line, they claim the try. And

:29:51.:30:01.

the try by Wayne Barnes is awarded and the scores are level.

:30:02.:30:17.

You'll not get a more controversial end to this game.

:30:18.:30:33.

We can go all the way back in what seems like a lifetime now to when

:30:34.:30:43.

France manufacturered a way to get their first choice back on.

:30:44.:30:59.

It goes through and France have won the game! It has been one of the

:31:00.:31:18.

longest games on record. It has been farcical towards the end. But, the

:31:19.:31:25.

upshot is that France have beaten Wales here at the Stade de France.

:31:26.:31:31.

France 20-18 Wales. It was a tremendous de-Februarysive

:31:32.:31:36.

effort from the Welsh at the end -- defensive effort. I still go back to

:31:37.:31:42.

the point to the very questionable substitution which allowed Slimani

:31:43.:31:50.

to come back on. And well, in the end, that was not satisfactory for

:31:51.:31:54.

anybody. The final score, France 20-18 Wales.

:31:55.:32:04.

So ends, the most remarkable game of rugby in the history of the

:32:05.:32:07.

international game. 79 minutes of not very much and then 21 minutes of

:32:08.:32:13.

almost one scrum and the most absurd drama really. In the end, France

:32:14.:32:18.

victorious. Tomas, what did you make of all that? Well, I think Wales

:32:19.:32:27.

deserved the win, you know. To be honest, Wayne Barnes, you know, his

:32:28.:32:33.

decisions, you know, very, very strange and I think the length after

:32:34.:32:38.

the game, you know, seven penalties to award, you know, there should

:32:39.:32:41.

have been a penalty try. I think that's not normal. Like you said,

:32:42.:32:46.

for 79 minutes, that was one of the most forgettable games you are

:32:47.:32:49.

likely to watch, but you will never forget the last 20. It was

:32:50.:32:55.

incredible. Wayne Barnes lost control, I have a lot of respect for

:32:56.:32:58.

him but he lost control in the last 20. There were players going off

:32:59.:33:04.

injured, sin-binned and it was a farce in the end. Conrad, Super

:33:05.:33:09.

Rugby, all the tries that you had down there, I'll tell you what, you

:33:10.:33:14.

can't beat a good scrum, especially when it lasts 20 minutes, I tell

:33:15.:33:24.

you. It was drama. It was a strange end to the Gateshead to be fair, if

:33:25.:33:30.

France won, I think they created more try-scoring opportunities. If

:33:31.:33:34.

France won, I would have said they were more disciplined. It was a

:33:35.:33:39.

strange game. Some great images here of Justin Tipuric. An extraordinary

:33:40.:33:41.

picture there of Dan Biggar alongside Trinh Duc there.

:33:42.:34:00.

Not sure how much Kate knows about the game but... In the spirit of the

:34:01.:34:05.

game, you would have to say, in case we don't have the chance to say it,

:34:06.:34:09.

how brave was that defensive performance by Wales? Fantastic.

:34:10.:34:14.

Let's hear from their captain. The most bizarre end to any Test

:34:15.:34:18.

match I think we have ever seen. You were obviously watching it from the

:34:19.:34:21.

sidelines, you'd gone off injured. Your perspective? Bit of amusement

:34:22.:34:28.

that I think we almost got 20100 minutes on the clock, minus time

:34:29.:34:39.

off. So it was interesting. Really interesting decision 90 minutes in,

:34:40.:34:47.

we felt with did enough. The repeated penalties almost gave them

:34:48.:35:01.

enough to get the win. Sean Edwards was app Plettic. They'll have to

:35:02.:35:11.

review that. How do you then reflect on the Championship for Wales

:35:12.:35:14.

because that's just two victories from five matches? I think

:35:15.:35:19.

irrelevance of what happened in the end, we feel we are a better team

:35:20.:35:23.

than that. Two from five isn't good enough. We felt we deserved more

:35:24.:35:27.

today but we are not going to use the last 20 minutes which was

:35:28.:35:31.

outside of the 80 minutes because we felt we done enough in the 80 to win

:35:32.:35:34.

the game today. Thank you for your time. So here is the table with one

:35:35.:35:38.

match left to play. It's playing anyway, but as you can see, France

:35:39.:35:42.

are in second place at the moment ahead of Scotland who beat Italy

:35:43.:35:46.

earlier on today. Sonia was straight in there with the question, did

:35:47.:35:49.

France cheat by bringing on a replacement prop when one of their

:35:50.:35:53.

front row forwards were supposedly having to have a head assessment

:35:54.:35:57.

injury. What do we think? Cheat is a strong word. There was a lot of

:35:58.:36:02.

gamesmanship going on. We could see Slimani from the commentary

:36:03.:36:06.

position, he was ready to go on three or four scrums before this. We

:36:07.:36:13.

all know concussion is a serious issue, but they played the rules,

:36:14.:36:17.

France. Before they did it, we speak with Martin and we said they should

:36:18.:36:22.

bring back Slimani and that's what they did. Let's bring it to light

:36:23.:36:25.

because it happened at a pivotal moment of the game, but this happens

:36:26.:36:30.

a lot. It happens, you know, at different times of the game and

:36:31.:36:36.

no-one's note else Ied it -- noticed it and maybe it's a good thing.

:36:37.:36:41.

Possibly the most bizarre thing is, you get a player yellow carded after

:36:42.:36:47.

80 minutes as he has to come back on because for ten minutes the game

:36:48.:36:51.

carried on. We were going to talk about the Lions and everything else

:36:52.:36:55.

for half an hour but we have no time left. I hope you have enjoyed it,

:36:56.:37:01.

you must come again! Thank you very much Tomas and Martin. Still an

:37:02.:37:06.

extraordinary atmosphere, barely anyone is leaving. There is still

:37:07.:37:09.

one match to go with England looking for a Grand Slam but that's the end

:37:10.:37:14.

of our live coverage of the Six Nations Championship and, as we

:37:15.:37:18.

proved today, there is absolutely nothing like it. Bye-bye.

:37:19.:37:21.

John Inverdale presents live coverage of the penultimate fixture of the 2017 Six Nations. Wales end their campaign in Paris as they look to record a sixth consecutive victory over France. Commentary comes from Eddie Butler and Jonathan Davies.