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Autumn internationals, Sport

Wales v Fiji: match report

Wales, Fiji, Cardiff, Millennium Stadium, Millennium, stadium, rugby, rugby union, sport, autumn international, autumn

Wales ended a five-match losing streak but Warren Gatland won't be happy with the performance

Wales 16-16 Fiji

Fiji fly-half Seremaia Bai kicked a last-gasp penalty to earn his side a deserved draw against a mediocre Wales at the Millennium Stadium.

The South Sea Islanders had dumped Wales out of the 2007 World Cup the last time the sides met, and they looked set to claim a first win over their hosts in Cardiff when they took a 13-6 half-time lead.

Read Tim Hart’s minute-by-minute report

A try from centre Albert Vulivuli, plus five points from the boot of Bai and a penalty from Josh Matavesi gave them the edge as Dan Biggar kicked two penalties for Wales.

Wales boss Warren Gatland sent on Mike Phillips, Stephen Jones, Tom Shanklin and Bradley Davies early in the second half in an effort to rouse his side from their stupor.

A penalty try soon followed after a series of scrums which the Fijian pack just couldn’t handle. Jones added the conversion to level the game.

Replacement Jones then quickly added a penalty to put Wales in front and a Hook kick-ahead from a turnover gave the home side more good field position a few minutes later.

That chance was wasted as the ball was spilled from a attacking maul and the game remained evenly-poised entering the final 10 minutes.

A rampaging North was then called back after a forward pass by Stephen Jones.

Wales even proved incapable of running the clock out with a series of pick and drives, conceding a penalty which Bai nervelessly slotted over with the last kick of the game to earn Fiji a deserved draw.

The result ends a five-match losing run for Wales, but there will be little that Gatland can take from the worst display of his tenure.

Next week Wales face a New Zealand team who must be licking their lips after watching that performance.

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About Tim Hart

Cardiff University Postgraduate Student

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