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Player Ratings: Punching above their weight

OPINION: It’s been a strange Six Nations for Wales, but Warren Gatland’s side went to Paris off the back of a positive win over Italy. How would they fare against a world-beating French side, off the back of a 50-point win at Twickenham?

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It was a difficult game to quantify for Wales. They seemingly had a good first half, yet France chipped away at them and racked up the points. Wales completely forgot to bring an attacking game with them, which certainly didn’t help. Given both sides’ form in this campaign, Wales probably punched above their weight to come away with a try bonus point.

Will Owen from RugbyPass rates the Wales players

15. Louis Rees-Zammit – 5
Rees-Zammit had an okay first half – he can use the masses of space to his advantage and make half-breaks. From a Wales perspective, you can’t help but wish they had a fullback who kicked more.

14. Josh Adams – 6.5
Adams is always technically fantastic and runs well when given space. Made the best of some difficult situations.

13. George North – 6
Picked a fantastic line for the opening try and had a great first half. It didn’t last, however, as Fickou schooled him for an early second-half try.

12. Nick Tompkins – 6
Carried well early on but made a horrible defensive read to let Ntamack through for France’s opening try. Put in a nice little kick for North to chase in the second half.

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11. Rio Dyer – 6.5
Chased kicks brilliantly and made lots of crucial tackles. Marking Damian Penaud is a tough gig, but Dyer couldn’t have done much more. Took his try at the end superbly, which notches him an extra half-point!

10. Dan Biggar – 4.5
Put in a few great kicks, but you can’t help but wonder why he didn’t do it more? Wales had no attack whatsoever, so why wouldn’t you use your 10’s massive boot?

9. Rhys Webb – 6
Webb’s pass for the opening North try was superb. The Osprey was okay, but was substituted at the right time.

1. Wyn Jones – 3
Atonio got the better of Jones at scrum time, which ultimately let France into the game when Wales were playing well.

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2. Ken Owens – 5.5
Solid – hit his targets at the lineout and had a handful of carries.

3. Tom Francis – 4
Had a few good trundles but ultimately was second best to Baille in the scrum.

4. Adam Beard – 6
Wales were keen to get Beard up in the air early at lineouts, and it paid off.

5. Alun-Wyn Jones – 6.5
The lock is 68 years old and still throwing offloads he has no right to throw. But let’s just pretend he’s “too old” and “finished” to suit the narrative.

6. Aaron Wainwright – 4.5
Not overly noticeable but made a handful of good carries.

7. Justin Tipuric – 6
Slowed the ball down a few times, but sadly not enough to stop a rampant French pack.

8. Taulupe Faletau – 6.5
Even when Faletau isn’t making flashy breaks, he did a ridiculous amount to rescue Wales when they’re going backwards – just as he has been doing for 100 games now.

REPLACEMENTS

16. Bradley Roberts – 6.5
Overthrew his first dart but atoned by scoring a try.

17/18 Gareth Thomas/Dillon Lewis – 7
Wales’ replacement props sent Wales forward at scrum time, which is positive.

19. Dafydd Jenkins – 4.5
Again, not a massive impact.

20. Tommy Reffell – 6
Clearly set out to be a nuisance at the breakdown and made one great turnover.

21. Tomos Williams – 8.5
Came on and immediately put in an attacking kick, which was exactly what Wales needed. Scored a try and came as close to turning the game as humanly possible.

22. Owen Williams – N/A
No significant impact.

23. Leigh Halfpenny – N/A

@RugbyPass

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