Italy edge past Wales with late penalty to end Women’s Six Nations on a high

Wales 8-10 Italy: Michela Sillari’s last-gasp penalty broke Welsh hearts and gave the Azzurre a second win of this year’s championship

Megan Armitage
at Cardiff Arms Park
Saturday 30 April 2022 15:00
Comments
<p>Italy celebrated after winning their second game of this year’s Women’s Six Nations </p>

Italy celebrated after winning their second game of this year’s Women’s Six Nations

Michela Sillari's late penalty inflicted late heartbreak on Wales as Italy finished the Women’s Six Nations on a high.

Keira Bevan thought she had won the match for the hosts with a try four minutes from time but Sillari held her nerve in the 80th minute to stun the 3,373 fans in attendance and cap a 10-8 win.

Sara Barattin scored Italy’s only try of the match and they led 7-0 for a large portion of the game, with Robyn Wilkins’ 71st-minute penalty marking Wales’ first points of the day - although the Welsh will finish the championship third in the table, one spot above the Azzurre.

Wales started anything but slowly as flanker Alisha Butchers made a beeline for the Italian 22 within the first two minutes, just coming up short.

But Wales didn't let up as winger Lisa Neumann brought the backs into play with two barnstorming runs up the side. Her 11th-minute run on the right brought her within two metres of the try line before being taken down by an Italian defence quick on their toes.

It might have been a sunny day in Cardiff but it started to rain yellow after 20 minutes as both Robyn Wilkins and Sioned Harries were sent to the sin-bin for high tackles.

With Wales down to 13, Andrea di Giandomenico's side were quick to take advantage with two scrums inside the 22.

The Azzurre continued their strong attack, with two runs down the left ending as penalties for Wales, but Italy finally struck gold in the 32nd minute as flanker Beatrice Veronese offloaded to Barattin, who thwarted Wales' defence and touched the ball over the line.

Sara Barattin scored Italy’s only try of the day

Sillari kept up her perfect goal-kicking record in this year’s championship to make it 7-0 to Italy as Wilkins and Harries returned to play before half-time.

After the break, Italy came back with speed and force, playing straight into the Wales 22. Some changes just after half-time saw Dragons captain Siwan Lillicrap replaced by Natalia John in the second row as Wales hoped to bring in some dynamism with their impact subs.

Turnover penalties seemed to be Italy's weakness as both Alex Callender and Harries showed good form and broke attacks close to the Italian try line in the 51st and 54th minute.

Jasmine Joyce showed a burst of energy soon after but was stopped by a tackle combination before coming back for a Wales penalty.

With 13 minutes to go, Lucia Gai broke up a dangerous-looking drive down the right by Wales to keep the visitors ahead.

But a penalty soon after put Wales in scoring range as Wilkins cleared the posts and put three points on the board to make it 7-3.

The 74th minute saw what looked to be a defining moment as a dominant Wales scrum broke through an stingy Italy defence and Wilkins finally found the line to get ahead for the first time of the game.

Keira Bevan went over for Wales late on but they had their hearts broken at the death

But it all came down to the last minute as a late penalty kick by Sillari pushed Italy back into the lead and saw them claim victory.

The TikTok Women’s Six Nations is more accessible than ever before. To find out how you can watch the Women’s Championship visit: womens.sixnationsrugby.com/tv/

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
Opt-out-policy
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

By clicking ‘Create my account’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Comments

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in