HOW THE TEAM RATED.
8 GEORGE NORTH Much more like the player we know he can be. Was really threatening with the ball in hand and made the most metres - 78 - of any Welsh player, including the strong carry ahead of Biggar's try.
8 JONATHAN DAVIES Another player getting back towards his best. Picked some really intelligent lines off his half-backs and forged an impenetrable midfield wall alongside his long-time centre partner Roberts.
7 LIAM WILLIAMS Didn't have that many chances to show his running ability and was maybe caught a bit narrow in defence a couple of times, but looked for work and did well to claim Davies' kick through.
7 DAN BIGGAR Crossed for his first try for Wales in 31 Tests, showing good pace to reach line. Excellent again in the kick to reclaim contests and orchestrated the steady supply of ball well. Late exit with hip injury.
8 RHYS WEBB Looked to break a couple of times with no joy, but then made the game's decisive incision, dummying and darting through to pave the way for Biggar's touchdown. Varied his passing game nicely.
7 GETHIN JENKINS Showed that he's still a hugely important figure with his work in the loose, carrying and tackling tirelessly, while also playing his part in a significant step up at the scrum. A real warrior.
8 SCOTT BALDWIN Justified his selection, delivering a 100 per cent return at the lineout and helping to shore up the scrum, while also making a contribution around the park, hitting rucks and making tackles.
8 SAMSON LEE Back after missing the Scotland game with concussion and back with a much more welcome bang. The cornerstone of a Welsh scrum that started solidly and grew stronger and stronger. What a future.
8 LUKE CHARTERIS Played his part in a much improved lineout, with his 6ft 9ins frame coming in very handy, both as a leaper - claiming two takes - and a lifter. Big work-rate summed by a tackle count of 11.
ALUN WYN JONES Magnificent, simply magnificent. Carried eight times, always with purpose and drive, made his tackles and was once again the main source of lineout ball, setting up those crucial driving mauls.
9 DAN LYDIATE Who says all there is to his game is tackling? Produced the skill of the match with the instant back-flip pass to send Biggar away to the line.
Carried a fair bit too, while the tackling speaks for itself.
8 SAM WARBURTON .CAPT. Put in a crucial ankle tap tackle on Remi Lamerat early on, did excellent work at claiming kick-offs and grafted away before limping off ten minutes from time to make way for Justin Tipuric 7 TAULUPE FALETAU Revelled in the improved scrum platform, showing his athleticsm and footballing ability off the base . On top of that, he was Wales' top tackle with 14 hits. Never stopped from first minute to last.
8 SUBSTITUTES Rhys Priestland (for D Biggar75), Paul James (for G Jenkins 69), Richard Hibbard (for S Baldwin 69), Aaron Jarvis (for S Lee 80), Bradley Davies (for L Charteris 69), Justin Tipuric (for S Warburton 69) FRANCE B Dulin; Y Huget, R Lamerat (M Bastareaud 17), W Fofana (R Tales 69), S Guitoune; C Lopez, M Parra (S Tillous-Borde 53); E Arous (V Debaty 53), G Guidado (B Kayser 53), R Slimani (U Atonio 53), R Taofifenua (J Suta 62), Y Maestri, T Dusautoir (capt), D Chouly (L Goujon 74), B Le Roux REFEREE Jaco Pepyer (South Africa) ATTENDANCE 82,000
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|Publication:||Western Mail (Cardiff, Wales)|
|Date:||Mar 2, 2015|
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