France beat Wales with a try after 20 minutes of added time

Wales scrum-half Rhys Webb says the squad feel they are much better than their fifth place finish in the Six Nations shows.

The dramatic 100th-minute 20-18 defeat in France followed losses against Scotland and England.

“We’re bitterly disappointed we finished fifth,” he told BBC Wales

“We’re not a fifth-ranked team and we feel as a squad we’re much better than that. But it just shows how exciting the championship has been.”

The Ospreys scrum-half, who started all five of his country’s Six Nations games, added: “Teams have beaten everyone.

“Ireland have beaten England and we beat Ireland, it’s been a funny championship.

“Games we’ve lost we felt we deserved to win, but we go back to the regions now and look forward to the summer tour against Tonga and Samoa and hope we get things right there.”

Wales try wider game

Flanker Justin Tipuric says Wales are working on playing a different type of game, despite having to rely on the boot of Leigh Halfpenny for all their points against France.

‘Did France cheat?’ ‘I wouldn’t use that term’

“We are getting out of our old pattern and trying new things, we are trying to spread the ball a bit wider,” insisted Tipuric.

“If we keep tweaking that, we are only going to get better and better, because in our team we have a lot of skilful players. We just have to make sure we use them.”

Prop Doubts

Webb shared the Welsh management scepticism over the alleged injury to prop Uini Atonio which allowed the hard-scrummaging Rabah Slimani to return for France deep into stoppage time.

“There was no issue with the three scrums beforehand and with the physio allowed on like that, just to bring him off then, there’s question marks over that,” he said.

“It’s questioning the integrity of the game… but it’s the first 10 minutes that has cost us that game.”

Another match-up in Paris

Howley questions ‘integrity’ of decision

Webb and Tipuric are likely to come up against Slimani again in the Ospreys’ European Challenge Cup quarter-final against Stade Francais at the Principality Stadium on 2 April.

“Are they going to turn up? Apparently they’ve been on strike (over the planned merger with Racing 92 which was cancelled on Sunday morning),” said Webb with a grin.

“We’ve got Treviso first so that gives the boys a chance to get back up to speed, then it’s a massive quarter-final the weekend after against Stade Francais.”


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