Scotland 18-28 Wales, Six Nations
Howley singles out Warburton for praise
March 9, 2013
Wales' Sam Warburton shows off his Man of the Match award, Scotland v Wales, Six Nations, Murrayfield, Scotland, March 9, 2013
Sam Warburton shone for Wales © PA Photos
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Caretaker coach Rob Howley praised Sam Warburton following his man-of-the-match showing against Scotland in their 28-18 win.

Warburton was recalled to the starting line-up having missed their round two win against Fracne due to injury and was then benched for their trip to Italy in round three. But back in possession of his normal openside berth, Warburton was superb for Wales.

The victory was achieved thanks to seven successful kicks by Leigh Halfpenny and Richard Hibbard's converted first-half try, which bettered Greig Laidlaw's 18 points with the boot for the Scots. But it was Warburton who was singled out by Howley.

"I was pleased with the victory," Howley said. "Murrayfield is not the easiest place to come. Many good Wales teams have come down the years and lost. I thought our pack was outstanding. In terms of their ball carrying and defensive qualities, were looked fairly strong. That gave us the platform and we need that today.

"In attack and defence, Sam Warburton was outstanding. He showed world-class qualities, pressure on the ball and vital turnovers. I'm delighted for Sam because he's had a tough time the last five-six weeks. So it's good to see him enjoying his rugby."

Howley, just like Johnson, also refused to take issue with Joubert's handling of the game and instead called on his men to improve their focus at vital moments. He said: "We were not happy with our own penalty county. In our last three matches, we have conceded nine in each, and that is the reason why we have won the last couple of games.

"So to go over 10 was very disappointing. We lacked discipline at times and it's important you listen to the referee. We need to take that on board because England next week is a pretty important game."

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

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