AFP

France sink Wales after chaotic and extended finale

France sink Wales after chaotic and extended finale
By Reuters

19/03/2017 at 01:55

France beat Wales 20-18 following a bizarre and chaotic end to their final Six Nations match on Saturday as Camille Chat scored a try 20 minutes after full time had elapsed.

The clock showed 99 minutes and 55 seconds when replacement hooker Chat dotted the ball down after nine penalty scrums, and Camille Lopez slotted over the conversion as France saved their place in the second pot ahead of the 2019 World Cup draw.

Wales had victory in their sights when Leigh Halfpenny's sixth penalty earned them a 18-13 lead but France won a key five-metre penalty scrum with one minute left.

Eight scrums later, after Wales prop Samson Lee was shown a yellow card and a series of controversial incidents and decisions, France finally got over the line for the second time.

Lopez scored two penalties and two conversions, making sure Les Bleus will finish the championship in third or second place and leaving Wales in fifth ahead of the Ireland v England clash.

La joie de Camille Chat (XV de France) - 18 mars 2017

La joie de Camille Chat (XV de France) - 18 mars 2017AFP

Wales, however, responded with a Halfpenny penalty after Virimi Vakatawa was shown a yellow card for a deliberate knock on and Halfpenny booted another as Wales took advantage of being a man up.

Wales reduced the arrears again when Halfpenny slotted his third kick as France were penalised time and again by referee Waynes Barnes.

The hosts struggled to retain possession in a scrappy start to the second half. Wales also failed to go through the phases but Halfpenny's perfect afternoon continued as he booted a 45-metre penalty to put the visitors in front for the first time.

Sebastien Vahaamahina grabbed Tipuric's arm in the air in a lineout, handing Halfpenny another 45-metre opportunity which the fullback slotted between the posts to give Wales a five-point lead.

The teams traded penalties and France, needing a try, opted for the scrum when they were awarded a last-minute penalty.

After 20 minutes of mayhem, including numerous replacements, a biting allegation and desperate Welsh defence, Chat finally claimed the winning try.

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