'Wales no longer look a threat to the big boys '
February 9, 2014
Wales found it hard going against Ireland © PA
Former Wales great Barry John has hit out at the side in the aftermath of their 26-3 loss to Ireland on Saturday.
Warren Gatland's Wales were comprehensively outplayed in every facet of the match with the coach later describing it is one of the lowest points during his tenure in charge of the side. And John, in his column for Wales Online, has questioned the coaches' decision to leave James Hook on the bench and delay Justin Tipuric's entry to the game.
John also said Wales "looked very ordinary and one-paced with no drive, urgency or imagination." And for John, Wales no longer have that fear factor that has seen them lift back-to-back Six Nations titles.
"I felt that come an epic encounter like Ireland, when Wales needed to front up, they would be ready for it," John wrote. "But I am sorry to say this Wales team now no longer represents a viable threat to the big boys in the world.
"They might still have a mathematical chance of retaining their Six Nations title. But based on this display, I can't see many Welsh followers running to the bookies and taking this bet on.
"Wales were literally battered from pillar to post by the Irish players."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd
Communication error please reload the page.
Raymond van Barneveld cruised into the second round of the PDC World Championship at Alexandra Palace on Monday with a 3-0 win over Rowby-John Rodriguez
The Scarlets have announced new deals for Wales internationals Liam Williams and Ken Owens
Bath have announced the signing of Fiji international scrum-half Niko Matawalu from Glasgow Warriors
Goodwood racecourse has signed the biggest single sponsorship deal in British horseracing history - reportedly worth £2 million a year over the next decade
Ander Herrera missed Manchester United's draw at Aston Villa with a muscle injury but is confident he will not be sidelined for long as his side enter the busy festive period