Line-out expert Hill may be ruled out, admits Gatland
Wales sliced through Georgia’s defence at will in the opening stages on their way to a 29-0 lead at half-time, after tries from Jonathan Davies, Justin Tipuric, Adams and Liam Williams.
The tries by Davies and Tipuric came from identical inside balls as Georgia’s first-phase defence crumbled, an effective attacking move that Howley and Jones would have been pleased with.
“Scoring off first phase is always what you want to do as a back line. We looked at a few aspects of that and Steve has come in seamlessly and worked really well. The boys have galvanised together and that showed in the first half,” Adams said.
“We had a look at their defensive set-ups and we identified a little weakness there [on the inside]. I managed to go through for the first one and, to be fair, their winger came across and did a really good job, so I had to pass it on to Gareth Davies. We ended up scoring off that and the second one was pretty much exactly the same.”
The Wales victory over Australia last November was a first over the Wallabies after 13 straight defeats, giving Adams confidence ahead of their meeting in Tokyo on Sunday. “We know what it takes to beat them, of course. They’ve got some outstanding players and big threats over the ball, so that’s going to be a massive focus for us this week – getting over the ball. In the second half of the Georgia game we were a bit weak over the ball and got pushed off a couple of times,” Adams said.
“That’s going to be a big emphasis for us with [David] Pocock and [Michael] Hooper, so we need to
‘My thoughts go to Rob and his family. Hopefully he’s pleased with the way we played’
tighten up that and change that point-of-contact area. That will be important.”
Meanwhile, Josh Navidi, the Wales No8, paid tribute to Howley, who was sent home after an alleged breach of World Rugby’s betting regulations. It has made for a difficult week for all involved, and Navidi said: “My thoughts go to Rob and his family. It would be nice to have him here, but hopefully he’s pleased with the way we played.”