Edwards plays down row over 'harmless' middle-finger gesture

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Shaun Edwards was left "disappointed" at being questioned over his apparent middle-finger gesture while celebrating Wales' Six Nations win over Ireland on Friday.

Two George North tries and one from Jamie Roberts earned Wales a 22-9 victory at the Principality Stadium - a result enthusiastically enjoyed by defence coach Edwards.

Television cameras picked up Edwards appearing to raise his middle finger during the celebrations, but the coach gave short shrift when quizzed on the subject during a media conference on Monday.

"I was very disappointed at that. It was a harmless hand gesture," Edwards said.

"I was just throwing a punch in the air. Everyone was focusing on that as opposed to an incredible defensive performance. There was nothing in that whatsoever."

North's brace came at the end of a week which saw the wing's place called into question, but Edwards believes his display was vindication of head coach Rob Howley's decision to keep faith with the Northampton Saints man.

"I'm just thankful I didn't listen to all those people who said he should have been dropped," Edwards said.

"There's no doubt George is a great player. He was really determined, he stuck to the defence systems and he scored a few tries. He's a fantastic player and he's a credit to his parents, he's one of the nicest people you'll meet.

"We're on a roll and we want to keep it going. Let's be honest, away wins in this championship have been rare. We'll go into Paris [on Saturday] all guns blazing trying to get victories.

"The boss will decide on selection, the time to be building players is definitely on a summer tour, I would have thought."