Wales secured top spot in Pool D after a hard-fought 35-13 win over a spirited Uruguay side in their Rugby World Cup match in Kumamoto City on Sunday.
Wales scored four tries in the second half to earn a bonus-point victory, which saw them leapfrog Australia into pole position in the pool. They will now face France in the quarter-finals, while the Wallabies will take on England.
The Welsh, who made numerous changes to their team following a bruising encounter against Fiji in mid-week, initially struggled for rhythm against a Uruguay team that defended with a lot of heart and fire.
Wales went into the break only 7-6 up following a Nicky Smith try and a conversion by fullback and Man of the Match Leigh Halfpenny. Flyhalf Felipe Berchesi kicked two penalties for Uruguay.
However, the Six Nations side were a lot more clinical in the second half, and scored four tries to down the plucky South American outfit. Josh Adams, Tomos Williams and Gareth Davies all got on to the scoresheet, while Wales also earned a penalty try.
However, the biggest cheer of the match came in 71st minute when German Kessler scored Uruguay’s only try of the match, which Berchesi duly converted.
Wales – Tries: Nicky Smith, Josh Adams, Penalty try, Tomos Williams, Gareth Davies. Conversions: Leigh Halfpenny (4).
Uruguay – Tries: German Kessler. Conversion: Felipe Berchesi. Penalties: Felipe Berchesi (2).
Wales – 15 Leigh Halfpenny, 14 Josh Adams, 13 Owen Watkin, 12 Hadleigh Parkes, 11 Hallam Amos, 10 Rhys Patchell, 9 Aled Davies, 8 Aaron Wainwright, 7 Justin Tipuric (c), 6 Aaron Shingler, 5 Adam Beard, 4 Bradley Davies, 3 Dillon Lewis, 2 Ryan Elias, 1 Nicky Smith.
Subs: 16 Elliot Dee, 17 Rhys Carre, 18 Wyn Jones, 19 Jake Ball, 20 Ross Moriarty, 21 James Davies, 22 Tomos Williams, 23 Gareth Davies.
Uruguay – 15 Gaston Mieres, 14 Leandro Leivas, 13 Juan Manuel Cat, 12 Andres Vilaseca, 11 Nicolas Freitas 10 Felipe Berchesi, 9 Santiago Arata, 8 Alejandro Nieto, 7 Santiago Civetta, 6 Juan Manuel Gaminara (c), 5 Manuel Leindekar, 4 Ignacio Dotti, 3 Diego Arbelo, 2 German Kessler, 1 Mateo Sanguinetti.
Subs: 16 Guillermo Pujadas, 17 Juan Echeverria, 18 Juan Pedro Rombys, 19 Diego Magno, 20 Manuel Diana, 21 Agustin Ormaechea, 22 Tomas Inciarte, 23 Rodrigo Silva.
Photo: World Rugby/Twitter