Six Nations: Wales equal record for most consecutive wins after struggle in Italy

Owen Watkin, left, scored one of two tries for Wales, who equalled their record win streak of 11 with victory over Italy.
ANDREW MEDICHINI/AP
Owen Watkin, left, scored one of two tries for Wales, who equalled their record win streak of 11 with victory over Italy.

Wales equalled their century-old national record for consecutive wins after overcoming a plucky Italy side 26-15 in the Six Nations on Sunday (NZT).

Italy scored the only try of the first half to trail 12-7 at halftime and Wales didn't score a try until the 53rd minute and finished with only two, but it was enough to notch an 11th successive victory, tying the Welsh record set 109 years ago.

The Italians extended their own record streak with a 19th straight defeat in the Six Nations since 2015. The 99-year-old tournament record became theirs outright last weekend in Edinburgh.

Italy's Braam Steyn, covered by players, scores a try against Wales in their Six Nations clash in Rome.
ANDREW MEDICHINI/AP
Italy's Braam Steyn, covered by players, scores a try against Wales in their Six Nations clash in Rome.

Wales' winning streak started against Italy in the 2018 Six Nations.

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Coach Warren Gatland made 10 changes after the fortuitous win over France in Paris last weekend, and a comfortable win at Stadio Olimpico was on the cards as Dan Biggar kicked them to a 12-point lead in the first half hour.

But Italy struck from an attacking lineout as Dean Budd and captain Sergio Parisse surged. Sebastian Negri and David Sisi helped in getting flanker Braam Steyn over the line, and the game descended into the tight content the Welsh feared.

Tommaso Allan converted Steyn's try but hit the post with a penalty just before halftime. He nailed a penalty after the break to cut the deficit to two.

Wales finally hit back with converted tries by Josh Adams and Owen Watkin to make the result safe with 10 minutes to go. But Wales finished with their least points in Rome in six years.

That won't matter to them, though, after starting the championship with two wins away from home before returning to Cardiff to face title rivals England in two weeks.

AT A GLANCE

AT ROME:  Wales 26 (Josh Adams, Owen Watkins tries; Dan Biggar con, 4 pen; Gareth Anscombe con) Italy 15 (Braam Steyn, Edoardo Padovani tries; Tommaso Allan con, pen). HT: 12-7. 

AP