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RugbyU: Phillips should aim for World Cup, says Howley

Wales assistant coach Rob Howley on Thursday claimed that scrum-half Mike Phillips stands a "realistic" chance of playing at the 2015 World Cup despite his recent sacking by Bayonne. Phillips, 31, was formally dismissed by the French club this week for allegedly being inebriated when he turned up for a video analysis session three weeks ago. The scrum-half has launched legal proceedings against the Top 14 side, but in the meantime he is training with Wales ahead of their clash with South Africa at the Millennium Stadium on November 9.

RugbyU: Howley hails Wales as title defence remains intact

Wales interim coach Rob Howley hailed the flexibility of his players as the Six Nations champions maintained their title defence hopes with a 26-9 victory over Italy. Despite a 16-6 win over France last time out, Wales came into their third game of the series with question marks hovering -- mainly because that win brought an end to seven straight defeats. For the sizeable Welsh support in Rome it was a nervous day at a rain-soaked Olympic Stadium after the visitors went in for half-time leading only 9-6 after a flurry of penalties for both sides.

RugbyU: Howley basks in 'special day' for Wales

Wales interim coach Rob Howley said his side's 16-6 win over France in their Six Nations clash, which ended their eight-game losing streak, was a special day. The 42-year-old had seen his position come under pressure after the run that coincided with last year's Grand Slam winning coach Warren Gatland stepping aside temporarily to prepare for this year's British and Irish Lions tour. However, a sterling defensive display and a late George North try allowed Wales to register just their fourth win in Paris since 1975.

RugbyU: French look to bounce back against Wales

France will be looking to get back on a winning track on Saturday and inflict a ninth successive defeat on Wales in their Six Nations clash. Both teams suffered opening match defeats, the French losing 23-18 to Italy and the Welsh recovering some pride after a woeful first-half performance losing 30-22 to Ireland in Cardiff. However, France had been on a four-match winning streak prior to that and back at home, and with another week training together, coach Philippe Saint-Andre is looking for a much improved performance.
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