Three things we learned from England's win over Wales in Six Nations
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Twickenham (United Kingdom) (AFP) –
England beat Wales 33-30 to secure he Six Nations Triple Crown at Twickenham on Saturday.
AFP Sports picks out three things that caught the eye:
Ben Youngs' reaction to being dropped from the starting XV against Scotland has been first rate. Impressive against Ireland, the 99-time capped veteran scrum-half carried on in the same vein against the Welsh.
The 30-year-old's deft inside pass to Anthony Watson opened the way for the winger to score the first try.
His positional kicking varied in quality, but was not costly and he also played a pivotal role in the second try.
His initial breaching of the Wales line set panic alarms ringing and stretched the defence which was unable to prevent Elliott Daly finishing in the corner.
It was also his surging run midway through the second-half that laid the foundations for Manu Tuilagi's try.
Man-of-the-match Youngs should normally have been looking forward to ending the tournament by celebrating his 100th appearance in the final match with Italy next weekend, but will have to wait with it being postponed because of the coronavirus.
He at least can be content that he has answered the questions that were asked of him by the ever-demanding Eddie Jones.
Out-of-sorts Parkes epitomises backs display
There is little spectacular about Hadleigh Parkes but his reliability is a reassuring presence in the Wales back division. However, his out-of-sorts performance against England reflected an under-par display by the men behind the scrum.
The 32-year-old New Zealand-born centre dropped a fairly simple pass with the try line beckoning in the first-half -- another costly handling error recalling his failure to touch the ball down over the tryline in the loss to Ireland.
His centre partner Nick Tompkins, playing against the country of his birth, did play an integral role in Wales's try straight from the second-half kick-off but it was a rare spark from a back divison that had its threat extinguished by their opponents.
The good, the bad and the ugly from Farrell
Owen Farrell may not be to everyone's taste, but he once again demonstrated his drive and effort on the pitch against Wales, along with a couple of incidents of ill-discipline.
The 28-year-old pushed his tally of Test points past 900 with his first penalty of the game and was foot perfect with his kicks throughout, nailing three penalties and converting all three tries.
His positional kicking often pinned the Welsh back, but he showed a lack of discipline on a couple of occasions.
He was penalised for hitting George North in the chest after the Welsh winger spilled the ball over the line, and a few minutes later he deliberately pushed Biggar in the back while chasing one of his kicks.
But he showed all his experience in cleverly managing his relationship with referee Ben O'Keefe as England ended the game with 13 players.
© 2020 AFP