Huw Jones believes Scotland can take confidence into the rest of the Six Nations after holding off a Welsh second half onslaught in Cardiff on Saturday.  

The Glasgow centre was delighted they held out to win despite Wales coming within a point after Scotland led 27-0 early in the second half. 

But Jones, 30, believes the visitors’ ability to grind out the victory – their third consecutive opening weekend triumph – showed the development of the team.  

 “It would have been really disappointing if we had lost that, so we can take heart from the fact that we stemmed the tide, managed to hold onto the win and, actually, almost got a try of our own which would have meant a bonus point. 

“That was disappointing not to get that fourth score, but we’ll take the win. 

“There are obviously positives to take from it, but there was a 30-minute period in that game we really need to look at.” 

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Scotland coasted into a 20-0 interval advantage, and Jones said that was down to a perfectly executed gameplan.  

“They did what we expected them to do. We knew they’d kick a lot and we managed that well, and when we did get possession in their half that’s when we came alive. 

“Our attack was good. We ran good lines, made breaks, and we were clinical when we got into their 22.” 

Jones admitted it was a “perfect start”, but admitted the second half display was not good enough despite the half-time talk focusing on a response from the hosts.  

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“We spoke at half-time about how there would be a response and we wanted to keep doing what we were doing, but I think their response was just really good. 

“I wouldn’t say we let up or anything, I would say it was discipline, with a few silly penalties letting them back into the game. 

“The crowd was incredible. I said pre-game that it shouldn’t be a factor, that the rugby should do the talking, but what an incredible atmosphere. It was just so loud in the second half. 

“But, yeah, discipline just really let us down. We kept letting them back into our half. That 30 minutes was pretty poor from us.” 

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While yellow cards to George Turner and Sione Tuipulotu were singled out post-match by Gregor Townsend, Jones said it was not just the alarming penalty count that hurt the visitors.  

"Across the board we were guilty. “When we were one man down, we talked about not putting our heads into rucks, and then I went and put my head in a ruck at one point. 

“Discipline is not just penalties, it is sticking to the plan, and doing what you’ve said you’re going to do. At different times we were all guilty of maybe that panic of ‘we need to get that turnover now’ and trying to solve something by ourselves, which doesn’t work, especially when you are a man down and the opposition are playing wide to wide which means you are chasing touchline to touchline. It wasn’t ideal. 

“Our response to what they brought in that second half wasn’t good enough, but we had the right messages, and we need to be better as a team responding to those messages. 

“It is frustrating but I think we salvaged a little bit in those last five minutes, and in the end we did enough to get the win which is what we came here for.” 

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Jones, who endured one of his most difficult days for Scotland in the corresponding fixture six years ago, was delighted to have finally ended more than two decades of Cardiff pain.  

“It has been quite a few years, and I personally have played down here a couple of times and experienced some disappointing losses – tough games – so to finally get a win down here, yeah it feels good.” 

He now knows a win over France at Murrayfield on Saturday would blow the championship wide open.  

“It's a really exciting position for us now with these two home games coming up.  

"We absolutely love playing at home and can’t wait to get back there. We know our record is pretty strong against these teams at home."