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LIVE BLOG: Six Nations opener – Wales v Ireland

WALES take on Ireland this afternoon in the first game of the 2023 Six Nations tournament, kick off 2:15pm.

Can Wales win or will be it Ireland who make the perfect start to their campaign?

Much has been said about the WRU this week following allegations of sexism and the banning of the song ‘Delilah’ but the time for talking is over.

Warren Gatland is back in charge and he has picked Joe Hawkins to make his Six Nations debut while Props Gareth Thomas and Tomas Francis join captain Ken Owens in the Wales front row. Alun Wyn Jones and Adam Beard complete the tight five.

You can read more on the team selection here: https://www.herald.wales/mid-wales/ceredigion-mid-wales/Sport/wales-name-team-to-take-on-ireland-at-six-nations-opener/

Updates will appear below:

14:17 – Ireland take the lead with Caelan Doris touching down after a lineout. Sexton adds the extras

14:23: Another one for Ireland – James Ryan goes over and Sexton adds the extras for a 14-0 lead just eight minutes in

14:27 – Chance for Wales – A Gareth Thomas tackle dislodges the ball and Rio Dyer kicks on but Hugo Keenan gets back just in time to touch the ball down in his own end

14:28 – From the scrum Wales get a penalty and Dan Biggar opts to kick at goal 3-14

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14:33 – Sexton adds a penalty for Ireland 3-17

14:36 – Wales are on the attack but James Lowe intercepts and runs on to score Ireland’s third try. Sexton adds the extras for 3-24

14:40 – There is another chance for Wales but they are penalised for not releasing the ball just five metres out and Ireland get possession back

14:41 – 25 minutes in and the penalty county is Wales 7-1 Ireland

14:42 – Make that eight as Wales are penalised for not rolling away – Sexton opts to kick at goal and slots it through 3-27

14:48 – Ireland on the attack again but a good tackle from Ken Owens wins the ball back for Wales

14:53 – Ireland’s turn to be penalised now for not rolling away – a score for Wales here would give them hope for the second half

14:55 – Wales head for the line but they are held up – the TMO is called to have a look

14:56 – It’s a great tackle from the Irish defender – no try

14:58 – Wales attack as the clock ticks over 40 minutes

15:00 – Wales kick ahead but there isn’t another red shirt to gather and Ireland kick the ball out for half time

15:01 – HALF TIME – Wales 3-27 Ireland

15:10 – What do Wales need to do in the second half in order to get back into the game? Cutting out the number of penalties would be a good start

15:17 – The second half is underway

15:19 – Ireland penalised for not rolling away

15:21 – Another Ireland penalty and Wales kick to touch

15:22 – Try for Wales – They try and be inventive from the lineout but it doesn’t quite work – The ball is worked to the left and the try is scored under the posts

15:24 – There were some afters after the try following a late tackle on try-scorer Liam Williams and the referee calms it all down before Biggar adds the extras 10-27

15:28 – The Irish penalties are building up now – obstruction this time and Wales kick for touch again

15:29 Wales attack but they can’t release following an Irish tackle near the posts and they gain possession back

15:32 – A kicking game ensues and it ends with Liam Williams making an excellent break but a pass out wide to Rio Dyer on the 22 is too high and forces him to take the ball out of play

15:34 – There is late contact on Liam Williams following his kick forward and the TMO are looking at this

15:36 – No cards but Wales have a penalty and they kick to touch

15:37 – Wales attack but they lose the ball and Ireland kick the ball away – here comes Wales again though

15:39 – Ireland win the ball back and this time they have the opportunity to kick to touch

15:41 – Dan Biggar is penalised for a knock on and Ireland kick to touch – they’ll be a looking for a bonus point try now

15:42 – They won’t get it on this occasion though as they are penalised for not releasing the ball

15:45 – Wales attack but again they are penalised for not releasing and Ireland can clear the ball downfield

15:46 – No they won’t as there was foul play from the Irish at the breakdown and Wales kick to touch

15:48 – 15 minutes left to play and the score stands at 10-27

15:50 There is a TMO review now for what looks to be a high tackle from Liam Williams and the referee agrees. Yellow for Williams – that is the last thing Wales needed right now

15:52 – Ireland attack but a pass is almost intercepted by Rio Dyer who knocks the ball on

15:53 – Ireland penalised for not releasing now and Wales kick to touch

15:53 – Owen Williams comes on to replace Dan Biggar

15:55 – Wales attack but they are now penalised for not releasing

15:56 – They do say the best form of defense is attack and that is exactly what Wales are doing but Ireland win the ball back again and clear downfield

15:59 – Ireland attack now and they finally go over for their fourth try with over 2 and a half minutes remaining on the Williams yellow and eight on the clock

16:00 Josh Van Der Flier flies under the posts and the conversion from Ross Byrne makes it 10-34

16:03 Ireland’s Hugo Keenan is named as the man of the match

16:05 Two minutes to go – 24 points down but Wales are still on the attack

16:06 – One minute left and Wales are penalised for not releasing – Will Ireland look to inflict more punishment on their hosts in the final minute?

16:07 The clock ticks over 80 minutes as Ireland throw the lineout in – here they come…

16:08 – They can’t score and that is the end of the game. Ireland have a comprehensive 10-34 win and a bonus point to start their campaign as well

16:10 – Thank you for following our coverage. England face Scotland next. Wales visit Scotland next weekend for their second game of the tournament – that one kicks off at 4:45