Owen Williams and Rhys Webb, who helped Ospreys reach the Heineken Champions Cup Round of 16, played crucial roles for Wales as they notched their first win of this year’s Six Nations Championship on Saturday with a 29-17 success over Italy in Rome.
Fly-half Williams kicked two conversions and a penalty, while scrum-half Webb starred in his first Wales start in six years, creating two of their four tries.
After Williams kicked a fifth-minute penalty, Webb produced a beautiful chip three minutes later behind the Italian defence, who allowed the ball to bounce twice, enabling Wales wing Rio Dyer to grab it and race over for a try that Williams improved.
After Harlequins fly-half Tommaso Allan kicked Italy’s first points of the game from a 15th-minute penalty, Wales full-back Liam Williams wriggled through some weak tackles for a 17th minute try. A penalty try sent the visitors in 22-3 up at the break.
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The second 40 had a fast start, with Italy flanker Sebastian Negri crossing in the 43rd minute and Allan kicking the conversion to cut Wales’ to 12 points.
However, any hopes Italy had of continuing that comeback were stopped dead in the 49th minute, when Webb darted through the Italian defence before unselfishly giving the ball to No.8 Taulupe Faletau, who secured the bonus point. Williams added the conversion.
Italy centre Juan Ignaxio Brex touched down in the 67th minute, with Allan again adding the extras, but it proved only a consolation as Wales held firm.
Webb and Williams will both hope to feature for Ospreys when they travel to the StoneX Stadium to face Saracens in the Heineken Champions Cup Round of 16 on April 2.