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Wales captain David Young
"It's been a difficult fortnight, but we concentrated on the job in hand"
 real 28k

BBC Scotland's Kheredine Idessane reports
"A fabulous flowing move put the game beyond Scotland"
 real 28k

Saturday, 18 March, 2000, 20:12 GMT
Williams double rocks Scots

Williams: Overcome with emotion after scoring his second
Wales 26-18 Scotland

Shane Williams scored two sensational tries as Wales consigned Scotland to their fourth straight Six Nations defeat.

Six Nations Championship
Williams, regarded as one of the great future hopes for Welsh rugby, scored only his second and third try in international rugby to the delight of the Millennium Stadium.

Though the Neath winger's tries lit up an otherwise workmanlike match, the foundations for the victory were laid by stand-off Stephen Jones.

Jones, the replacement for injured record-points scorer Neil Jenkins, kicked 16 of his side's 26 points.


Williams is too quick for Gregor Townsend
Scotland were unfortunate to have two penalty kicks rebound off the posts and a seemingly legitimate try ruled out for a knock-on, but Wales largely deserved their win.

A late try from Gregor Townsend, who had a largely ineffectual game at his new position in the centre, gave the scoreline a more respectable gloss for the Scots but in truth they rarely looked like breaking down the Welsh defence.

Had Scotland been able to match Wales' drive and passion in the first half in the way they did in the second, things might have been different.

The Millennium Stadium had to wait until five minutes before the break before Williams' try gave the game a bit of life.

For it looked as though the teams might enter the interval level, with each side managing only three solitary points each in an opening period littered with errors.

Had Duncan Hodge's 34th minute penalty kick from almost 50m not rebounded off the post, the result might have been very different.


Wales wasted chances, but Scotland barely made any
Scotland would have taken a 6-3 lead and from the restart Wales would have had to clear their lines.

But the luck of the bounce favoured Wales and a fine burst from centre Mark Taylor saw them out of their 22 and up to the halfway line before Scotland could catch their breath.

As the play switched across to the left, Alan Bateman looked up - saw the Scots back line were very flat - and sent a grubber kick into the gaping space behind.

Williams had been looking ominous early on and he reached the ball first, chipping ahead before touching down unchallenged.

Hodge was unlucky to see another penalty rebound out off the posts before Jones slotted his second penalty goal to give Wales a 13-3 interval lead.

Scotland found their fire in the second half and roared back into the Welsh.

In the opening five minutes Martin Leslie believed he should have had a try, diving off the back of a maul into the left corner.


Townsend: Poor decisions
But the touch judge ruled he had knocked the ball on as he attempted to ground it.

Full-back Chris Paterson was only denied a try by the flying tackle of his opposite number Matt Cardey.

It was only as much as the Scots deserved when Leslie finally breached the Welsh defences in the 45th minute.

Nicol palmed the ball to Martin Leslie, who this time made no mistake as he spun round the side of the try-line ruck.

Hodge slotted the conversion to pull the scores back to 13-10 and the Welsh spectators began to wonder of the home side might rue their early profligacy.

But Jones slotted two more penalties to give Wales a nine-point cushion and it seemed to sink the spirit of the Scots

Wales then put together a thrilling drive as man after man took the ball shudderingly forward into the retreating line of Blue.

With the Scots sucked into their left corner, Wales switched the play with a lightning 20 yard pass across the posts which found Williams in an ocean of space on the right flank.

He cantered over for his second try of the match, Jones taking his tally up to 16 with the conversion.

Glenn Metcalfe was sin-binned to leave them a man short for the final 10 minutes, and though Townsend managed a try five minutes into stoppage time, the Scots never really threatened an upset.

Teams:

Wales: Cardey, G. Thomas, Bateman, Taylor, S. Williams, S. Jones, Moon, Rogers, G. Jenkins, Young, Gough, Moore, Budgett, Charvis, G. Lewis.
Replacements: McBryde, S. John, Popham, M. Williams, Smith, Strange, James.

Scotland: Paterson, Moir, Townsend, J. Leslie, Metcalfe, Hodge, Nicol, Smith, Brotherstone, Stewart, S. Murray, Grimes, M. Leslie, Pountney, Reid.
Replacements: G. Bulloch, Hilton, Weir, Mather, Redpath, McLaren, A. Bulloch.
Referee: David McHugh (Ireland)

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Links to other Six Nations stories are at the foot of the page.