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Page last updated at 19:42 GMT, Saturday, 6 February 2010

Coach Warren Gatland blasts Wales lock Alun Wyn Jones


'Stupid' Wyn Jones cost Wales - Gatland

Wales coach Warren Gatland said that the sin-binning of lock Alun Wyn Jones was the major factor in Saturday's 30-17 defeat to England at Twickenham.

England scored 17 unanswered points after Jones' first-half yellow card for a trip on England hooker Dylan Hartley.

"It's huge isn't it? If that costs a game... it's massive you make a decision like that," Gatland said.

"It's absolutely stupid what he's [Jones] done and to be honest it's probably cost Wales the game today."

Gatland admitted that British and Irish Lions lock Jones could lose his place in the starting line-up next week, when Wales will look to bounce back at home to Scotland.

"It's something we're going to have to look at next week," Gatland admitted.

Wales lock Alun Wyn Jones trudges off after his sin-binning against England
Wales lock Alun Wyn Jones trudges off after his sin-binning against England

"You need 15 players on the field, particularly it's an issue that we highlighted during the week about making sure that we don't give anything soft away, trust your defence, trust the system, trust your team-mates.

"Unfortunately on one or two occasions we didn't do that today."

Despite allowing England an advantage, Wales closed to within three points of their hosts with nine minutes left when centre James Hook made a superb break to score and set up a thrilling finish.

With Wales on the attack, England full-back Delon Armitage intercepted a pass from fly-half Stephen Jones.

Toby Flood was in support and he in turn sent fellow centre Mathew Tait away, the Sale man then producing a skilful reverse pass for James Haskell to score England's clinching try.

"Another intercept try we've thrown," bemoaned Gatland afterwards. "To me the most disappointing fact about the game is we've conceded 17 points when we're down to 14 men.

"We'd spoken all week about discipline and not giving anything stupid away and that's just really cost us the game.

"We've just got to front up and be honest. [Wales assistant coach] Shaun Edwards said [to Jones] in the changing rooms 'I just hope you never ever do that again in your career'."

Gatland, though, praised his team's second-half recovery that threatened a repeat of their 2008 fightback win when Wales trailed 19-6 and ended up winning by seven points.

"We got some quality ball in the second half," he added. "We looked incredibly dangerous with quick ball. At 20-17 [behind], I thought we were going to win the match, but unfortunately we then threw an intercept pass.

"It is a feeling of complete frustration, but I am proud with the guts the players showed to come back like they did.

"I am really proud of the performance in terms of the character we showed and I think you will see a really positive reaction."


Wales captain Ryan Jones said that it was unusual for his Ospreys team-mate Wyn Jones to make such a big error.

"He's made a mistake and unfortunately it's cost us but it's unusual, It's certainly out of character for him," skipper Jones said.

"But we'll rally round him, it's not his fault, there was plenty of rugby played outside [his 10 minutes in the sin-bin] where we could have clawed it back and we didn't.

"He's a young kid but he's experienced, he's been to the top of the game, he doesn't need to be told anything.

"He made a mistake but that's one of those things you've got to learn from and I'm sure it's not one he'll make again.

"We can't afford to come to places like this and give teams a head-start.

"Discipline cost us, line-out cost us and we'll take a lot of positives.

"Win, lose or draw this game has got to be put to bed because we've got another one [against Scotland in Cardiff] in seven days' time.

"So we're going to go home tonight, we're going to dust ourselves off.

"There's a lot of rugby to be played in this tournament, we've just got to make sure that we don't make these mistakes again."

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see also
England 30-17 Wales
06 Feb 10 |  Rugby Union
Johnson praises England execution
06 Feb 10 |  Rugby Union
England v Ireland match stats
31 Jan 08 |  Rugby Union
Six Nations as it happened
06 Feb 10 |  Rugby Union
Wales' rugby fixtures
26 Jun 07 |  Welsh
Wales rugby results archive
15 Oct 03 |  Welsh
Coming up next on Scrum V...
03 Nov 08 |  Welsh
BBC Sport Wales coverage
03 Oct 11 |  Wales

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