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Last Updated: Saturday, 5 February, 2005, 19:50 GMT
Wales must build on win - Henson
Wales centre Gavin Henson
Match-winner Gavin Henson said he hoped Wales' momentous 11-9 victory over England would be the start of something special for his side.

"We needed that. Hopefully we'll go on a run and maybe win something in this championship," Henson told BBC Sport.

The 23-year-old said he never doubted his ability to kick the awkward late penalty that earned Wales their first win over England since 1999.

"I knew I was going to kick it - I've been kicking them all week," he said.

Henson, who was awarded the man of the match award for an outstanding all-round display, admitted he had to produce a big performance after his confident boasts leading up to the showdown.

"I don't tend to feel pressure to be honest but I've been building myself up in the newspapers all week so I had to deliver," he said.

"As a team we did really well and the fans deserve it. It's been a long time coming and it's just a great win."

Wales coach Mike Ruddock agreed that the gritty victory - after a string of near misses against some of rugby's superpowers - had to be the first step on the team's rehabilitation as a major force.

"We've got Italy next week so we can't get too far down the track in terms of over-enjoyment of this," he told BBC Sport.

This is the best moment of my career
Wales captain Gareth Thomas
"It's pleasing, but we can play better and we have to go to Italy and show that we can.

"I think that's what we've been searching for for quite a while, but as it turns out we were quite frustrated. We don't think we played quite as well as we can.

"But sometimes it's all about the result and we got it.

"It's been a long time coming - 12 years since we've beaten England in Cardiff and that's too long really.

"We didn't handle the pressure too well at times and made some unforced errors, but we stuck at it and fitness levels have come on a mile because we finished strong."

Wales captain Gareth Thomas hailed the victory as the highlight of his long career at the top level.

"This is the best moment, without a shadow of a doubt," he said.

"I've wanted to do it with this bunch of boys for three or four years. We've been through some real tough times and stuck together and this is the culmination of all the hard work we've put in.

"We played badly if anything but we wanted to win. But I think it shows how far we've come that we can go out and take the world champions' scalp by performing badly."

Thomas laughed off his first-half sin-binning after an altercation with England lock Danny Grewcock.

"I didn't clench my fist - it was a slap across the face," he said.

"My mother would have sent me to my bedroom for that, not to the sin-bin - but that's rugby!"


WATCH AND LISTEN
Highlights: Wales 11-9 England


Interview: Wales' Gavin Henson


Interview: Wales' captain Gareth Thomas



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