1 Mar 2015

Italy and Wales win in Six Nations

11:50 am on 1 March 2015

A second-half try from first-five Dan Biggar helped Wales to a 20-13 victory over France to keep their Six Nations rugby hopes alive while Italy enjoyed a stunning 22-19 victory over Scotland.

Alun Wyn Jones speaks to referee Jaco Peyper during Wales Six Nations rugby match against France in Paris.

Alun Wyn Jones speaks to referee Jaco Peyper during Wales Six Nations rugby match against France in Paris. Photo: PHOTOSPORT

Wales led 6-3 at the break in Paris thanks to two penalties from fullback Leigh Halfpenny while first-five Camille Lopez scored France's points but also missed two kickable penalties.

Halfback Morgan Parra missed another penalty for France before Lopez put the sides level on 49 minutes but Halfpenny restored the visitors' lead a minute later with another flawless kick.

The decisive score came on 58 minutes when Biggar scored the first try of the game in the corner following a line break by halfback Rhys Webb.

Halfpenny missed the difficult conversion attempt but moved his side into an 11-point lead shortly afterwards with another penalty.

France rallied and finally breached the Welsh line on 67 minutes when fullback Brice Dulin went over in the corner while Lopez's successful conversion moved the home side within a score.

However, French indiscipline at the scrum handed Halfpenny another kickable penalty with seven minutes remaining to give Wales their second victory of the campaign and leave France all but out of this year's championship.

"We had a tough few weeks and against a French side in Paris it's always difficult," the Wales wing George North says.

"But, the boys were tight, we stayed together and brought home a strong performance today. To come out here and get a win is great for our championship hopes."

Scotland are facing their fourth wooden spoon in 11 years after a last-minute penalty try in Ediburgh gave Italy only their second ever victory away from home in the Six Nations.

"There have been a couple of tough losses in recent years, so it's great to come out on the right side of a result," man of the match fullback Luke McLean says.

"A win is tough enough, but to win away is a great thing. We've got two matches at home from here on so we'll try to take this forward as much as we can."

Scotland led by 16 points at the break thanks to an intercept try by centre Mark Bennett while lock Joshua Furno and wing Giovanbattista Venditti scored for Italy.

A penalty from first-five Laidlaw penalty midway through the half moved Scotland four points ahead but relentless Italian pressure in the final 10 minutes finally paid off when referee George Clancy awarded a penalty try after Scotland pulled down the Italian maul with Sergio Parisse looking set to score.

"We're disappointed with the performance," Laidlaw says.

"We let Italy into the game right at the end and it cost us. But it wasn't just down to that, it was the whole performance."

"We had some good stuff but there was way too much poor stuff in between."

"We'd talked about discipline all week but we just let them chip away at our lead."

The third round of the Six Nations concludes Monday (NZ time) when the only remaining unbeaten teams in tournament, Ireland and England, meet in Dublin.

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