Wales coach Warren Gatland says Fiji’s scrum put them under pressure. Photo: WalesOnline
Wales coach Warren Gatland was relieved to get a win over Fiji despite missing out on a bonus point in a thrilling game in Cardiff.
The Welsh looked well-set to pick up maximum points when they led 17-3 after half an hour, with two tries under their belts.
However from there Fiji grew into the game, and even threatened an upset when they got back to within four points early in the second half.
Wales players show exhaustion more than celebration after the final whistle. Photo: WalesOnline
Wales beat Fiji 23-13 at the Millennium Stadium but failure to secure a bonus point win means their Pool A fate is far from certain
Never mind a bonus point, Wales will be mightily relieved to escape from the Millennium Stadium with a victory after a compelling and frantic World Cup dust-up with Fiji.
Fiji head coach John McKee leads Fiji into three impressive games against the best. Photo: Times UK
Fiji coach John McKee admits it’s frustrating to still be without a point despite three impressive displays in the World Cup.
Having already lost hard-fought games against England and Australia, Fiji were beaten 23-13 in Cardiff by Wales, in a game that could have gone either way.
The Fijian side huddle at the Swansea University grounds for a final tuneup before the match against Wales. Photo: Fiji Rugby
The Pool A showdown will be more clear after the weekend; separating the two teams going to the quarterfinals, one winning a free passage to the 2019 competition while the fourth team with Uruguay fighting for qualifications.
The three Tier One nations with England on six points on the points table; and Wales and Australia with nine points apiece leading the charge for the final two places to get into the final eight.
Wales skipper Sam Warburton says Fiji has improved from the team that Wales defeated 66-0 in 2011. Photo: World Rugby
CARDIFF – They might have been decimated by injury, but Wales will forget all about their unprecedented misfortune if they make it three successive Pool A victories, at the expense of Fiji, in the Millennium Stadium on Thursday (Friday morning FT).
Having arrived at Rugby World Cup 2015 without his irrepressible full-back and goal-kicker Leigh Halfpenny, first-choice scrum-half Rhys Webb and centre Jonathan Davies, coach Warren Gatland has since lost Corey Allen to a hamstring tear and Scott Williams and Hallam Amos to knee and shoulder injuries respectively.
The former Welsh skipper says he is already ’emotionally exhausted’ from watching Wales do battle in this nightmare World Cup group
The Fijian threat makes Gwyn Jones more nervous. Photo: Getty Images
This really is a brutal group. We are barely halfway through the pool matches and I am emotionally exhausted from just watching.
Somehow, the players must gather themselves for a very different challenge against Fiji, but it’s far easier to do that after a win.
Warren Gatland and Attack coach Rob Howley keeping the Wales players work in training. Photo: WalesOnline
Gatland says management have made Wales’ players aware they will be looking their GPS numbers and body language in training
Warren Gatland has read the riot act ahead of Wales’ vital World Cup clash with Fiji by revealing he’s prepared to drop anybody shirking in training.
The Wales coach made just three changes to the side that beat England 28-25 at Twickenham last weekend in Pool A to inspire the nation with a real backs to the wall job.