Wales head coach Wayne Pivac said on Saturday that he felt an overwhelming sense of relief at his side being crowned Six Nations champions nearly a week after their final game in which they lost to France on the final play.
Wales claimed their second Six Nations title in three years after second-placed France lost 27-23 at home to Scotland on Friday night in the final match of the tournament.
Pivac said it was a “sickening feeling” for the players after missing out on a Grand Slam and that he himself did not want to step out of the house until Thursday.
“It was an emotional roller-coaster, the last seven days, because we put in by far our best performance against the French… To lose it in the last play of the game was devastating,” Pivac told reporters.
“Then we didn’t know if it was good enough to win the Championship, waiting seven days for that match and then go through that match — which looking back was a really exciting match, with so many moments that kept us on our toes.
“We talk about chaos and making significant change and having to adapt [amid the pandemic]. It was really evident that we had to do something different during this campaign — which was watching ourselves win a Championship from our individual lounges.”
Pivac, who had been heavily criticised in 2020 after Wales finished fifth, thanked the Welsh rugby board for sticking by him but said his side are not yet the finished product.
“We will keep on improving and fine tuning. We’ll draw a line in the sand now and see how we are. We’re measuring up quite nicely,” he said.
“We can’t get ahead of ourselves. As you’ve seen in this Six Nations, Scotland have improved, Ireland have improved, and England beat the French. So there are no easy games, and the Rugby World Cup is going to be the ultimate for us.”