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Wales-Fiji: the Welsh resisted, Radradra cracked


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Wales-Fiji: the Welsh resisted, Radradra cracked


We expected the Fijian magicians to wow us, but that was not the intention of the Welsh. Like the second row Will Rowlands, author of 26 tackles (100% success), Warren Gatland's men did everything to limit the Fijian flights. With more than 220 successful tackles, against only 70 for the Fijians, Wales demonstrated their defensive solidity which however cracked in the last ten minutes in the face of Fijian madness and envy. But the important thing is there with the victory and the five points this Sunday.

The captain of this Fijian team tried to lead the way tonight. Author of the first test of his team (13th) on a breakthrough between Biggar and Wainwright, it is also he who creates the gap with an excellent off-load which launches Radradra on the test of Tagitagivalu (17th). Always on the advance with his power and formidable with his hooks and feints, he represented a constant threat for Wales.

After the fourth Welsh try (Elliot Dee, 66th), the score difference was 18 points. Seeing Fiji come back and have a chance to win then seemed impossible as they seemed to be in difficulty the further the match progressed. But carried by the entries of Ravai, Botia and Tuisova, the Fijians found their way back by winning duels thanks to their power. The Fijian bench really brought freshness to the field and allowed the Flying Fijans to leave this match with two points on the clock.


We know his offensive talents, which he demonstrated again this Sunday, but it was especially his errors in defense that stood out. Involved in three of the four Welsh tests, he can be judged at fault with a first missed tackle on North (7th), an aggressive climb which frees up space on the test of the same North (29th) and finally by being caught inside at the start action on Rees-Zammit's try (48th). To crown his performance it was he who committed the forward in the Welsh 22 meters on the match point while the try was close.

He warned the Welsh many times throughout the match but waited until the 68th minute to release the first yellow card against the Leek XV. They were however penalized 17 times this evening, often close to their line by cutting dangerous actions but the card took a long time to be released by the evening referee. There are also situations of disputed Welsh tackles which have not been noted by the refereeing body. We will not repeat the match but different decisions could have been taken and we could have seen one or even several yellow cards issued earlier in the game.

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