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Page last updated at 22:50 GMT, Saturday, 19 March 2011

Warren Gatland reprimands beaten Wales against France


Players just didn't turn up - Gatland

Wales coach Warren Gatland criticised his players after a 28-9 loss to France in Paris saw them go from Six Nations title outsiders to end in fourth place.

England's loss earlier in Ireland meant Wales could have sneaked the championship with a 27-point win.

But even that improbable chance soon disappeared as Wales errors gifted France lock Lionel Nallet two tries.

"I'm very disappointed, we just didn't turn up mentally today," Gatland told BBC Sport.

"We've given away too many turnovers, some soft penalties that were crucial and the first couple of scores were down to our own errors really.

"France did not have to work for the points that they got, particularly early on, and we made it difficult for ourselves.

"When you're right mentally you are strong over the ball, you are aggressive at the breakdown and we weren't good enough in that area."

France led 11-3 at half-time after Wales were shoved off a ruck, allowing Nallet to scoop up the ball and charge over for an unconverted try.

Nallet benefitted again early in the second half when Julien Pierre charged down Wales fly-half James Hook's attempted clearance before popping the ball to his second-row colleague.

Soon after Hook was sin-binned for a dangerous tackle on Morgan Parra and Wales had a mountain to climb, although Gatland disagreed with the match officials' decision.

"A yellow card is a bit tough, it was a little bit soft, it's fairly innocuous really," Gatland added.

Wales lock Alun Wyn Jones admitted that his coach was right to criticise their performance at the breakdown areas.

"The urgency wasn't there in the contact areas," Jones said. "As players we won't make any excuses, it's very disappointing to finish the Six Nations like that.

"It's a pretty barren place in the changing room at the moment.

"We want to be top three in the world, unfortunately it wasn't there today and it hurts."

Wales players in Paris

Highlights - France 28-9 Wales

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see also
France 28-9 Wales
19 Mar 11 |  Rugby Union
Wales suspend coach Shaun Edwards
20 Mar 11 |  Welsh
Six Nations final day as it happened
19 Mar 11 |  Rugby Union
Wales' rugby fixtures
26 Jun 07 |  Welsh
Wales rugby results archive
15 Oct 03 |  Welsh
BBC Sport Wales coverage
03 Oct 11 |  Wales

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