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'There was a lot said about Johnny being captain, he was great today' - Alun Wyn Jones defends Sexton's leadership

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Wales captain Alun Wyn Jones defended counterpart Johnny Sexton after Ireland's 24-14 win. Photo by Ramsey Cardy/Sportsfile

Wales captain Alun Wyn Jones defended counterpart Johnny Sexton after Ireland's 24-14 win. Photo by Ramsey Cardy/Sportsfile

SPORTSFILE

Wales captain Alun Wyn Jones defended counterpart Johnny Sexton after Ireland's 24-14 win. Photo by Ramsey Cardy/Sportsfile

Wales captain Alun Wyn Jones refused to look for excuses after his side were comfortably beaten 24-14 by Ireland at the Aviva Stadium.

After blitzing a poor Italy team last weekend, Wales were handed their first reality check under new head coach Wayne Pivac.

Ireland dominated Wales all over the pitch and looked much like their former selves as they clinically put their opponents to the sword.

17 handling errors summed up Wales's struggles as they looked to play an expansive game-plan that was stopped in its tracks by poor mistakes, which came on the back of Ireland's pressure.

Jones has enjoyed plenty of battles with Ireland down through the years, but he didn't exactly feel like he was playing against a new team under Andy Farrell.

"There are a lot of familiar faces still there," he said.

"Obviously Faz has been defence coach for a long time. There was a lot said during the week about Johnny (Sexton) being captain, I thought he was great today.

“It's funny, when change comes, it takes a while to implement change and people forget that, but that's not an excuse.

"If we are focusing on us, we have had a lot of change but that is no excuse for us losing that game."

Pivac echoed his skipper's sentiments as he was left to rue his side's sloppy errors, which stopped Wales getting a foothold in the game.

"If you look at first-half, we didn’t have enough ball or territory," the head coach added.

"It was about 60-40. We scrambled well. We showed them the edges which we worked on.

"We felt if we got possession, we could turn the game around. That didn’t work and they were accurate.

"There’s a learning there. We put about 8 balls down. That’s unacceptable. Too many turnovers. You can’t build constant pressure which Ireland did."

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