Wales owed it to the fans - Lydiate after Italy romp


Wales captain Dan Lydiate dedicated Saturday's 67-14 thrashing of Italy to the fans as they secured second place in the Six Nations with a dominant display.

Standing in for the injured Sam Warburton as skipper, Lydiate led his side to a nine-try romp that went some way to assuage Wales' disappointment at seeing their title hopes ended by England last week.

And Lydiate said the victory in Cardiff was the least the Wales faithful deserved.

"We were disappointed with last week and we owed it to the fans this week," he told BBC Sport.

"Still gutted with the soft tries [conceded] but the boys played their hearts out and I couldn't ask for more from the squad.

"Two bad halves of rugby let us down in this championship, let's hope we learn from it and make sure we don't start games like we have done."

George North, who scored for the fourth successive game with a fine solo effort in the second half, echoed the sentiments of his captain.

"It feels awesome, we had to come out and perform, we showed our intent to win well and that scoreline says it now," he said.

"What happened last week, we had to work hard to get it right. We had to perform well and get the result we knew we deserved."

Losing skipper Sergio Parisse says Italy must look to the future and a new era, with head coach Jacques Brunel set to leave his post and join Bordeaux-Begles.

"This campaign was really difficult but every nation has injuries," he said. "Maybe it's worse for us because we don't have so much depth in our group.

"But no excuses, we continue to work hard and from June we have another staff and maybe things are going to change."