Wales player ratings: Dewi Lake ‘stands up’ to Springboks physicality but Warren Gatland’s men overwhelmed by world champions

Colin Newboult
Wales' Dewi Lake evading a tackle from Springboks' Faf de Klerk to score in 2024 Test.

Dewi Lake in action for Wales against the Springboks in 2024.

Following a heavy 41-13 defeat to South Africa in the mid-year international at Twickenham on Saturday, here are the player ratings for Wales.

15 Cameron Winnett: The full-back impressed in the Six Nations but he struggled to impose himself here. The Springboks never really let him breathe. 5

14 Liam Williams: Gave it absolutely everything and was an excellent outlet on the kick-chase, helping Wales gain some much-needed field position. 7

13 Owen Watkin: Struggled to get involved quite frankly as he failed to make an impact. Watkin is yet to truly convince at this level. 4

12 Mason Grady: Some good defensive reads while he showed his physicality in attack, but he didn’t get enough chances to display his quality. 5

11 Rio Dyer: The speedster has been one of Wales’ shining lights over the past year, but this was not a good day for Dyer. He was yellow carded early on while he was also burned a couple of times defensively. 4

The good and bad

10 Sam Costelow: A mixed bag from the talented playmaker. Despite a poor missed penalty, Costelow very much ended the first half in credit by taking some fine options. However, he struggled after the break. 6

9 Ellis Bevan: A good showing on debut from the scrum-half. The nuts and bolts were there considering it was not easy behind a pack which was bested. 6

Planet Rugby player ratings key 10 - Career defining performance 9 - Outright blockbuster effort 8 - Significantly influenced the result of the game 7 - Committed and effective outing 6 - Flashes of brilliance outside of executing fundamentals 5 - Fulfilling the role required by position (base level) 4 - Poor execution of fundamentals 3 - Costly errors and/or discipline in the game 2 - Poor performance that directly impacted the result 1 - Grossly ineffective throughout 0 - Should have carried water instead

8 Aaron Wainwright: Has been Wales’ best player over the past 12 months and produced another impressive display here. Good on both sides of he ball. 7

7 James Botham: Quieter than his back-row colleagues, although he made his hits defensively and didn’t shirk anything. 5


6 Taine Plumtree: Very promising from the tall flanker, who spoilt Springboks ball at both lineout and maul. A real disruptor and someone who could be an asset going forward. 7

5 Ben Carter: Great work rate defensively, despite one slightly errant hit, but it was a tough battle against the Boks behemoths. 6

4 Matthew Screech: See his lock partner. Not overwhelmed by any means but ultimately faded before being taken off. 5

Hammered by Ox

3 Keiron Assiratti: Wasn’t the first and won’t be the last but Assiratti was absolutely smashed by Ox Nche at the scrum. Hooked at half-time. 3

2 Dewi Lake (c): Some performance from the captain, who led the team by example. He took his try extremely well and was very busy throughout. Lake also stood up to the Springboks physicality and managed to dominate in contact on occasions. 8

1 Gareth Thomas: Did a better job than his compatriot in the scrum and also put himself about in the loose, making 12 tackles before he was replaced. 5

Replacements: The game ran away from Wales late on as the bench failed to give them anything of note. A complete lack of thrust in the latter stages of the contest. 3

READ MORE: Springboks shake off rust as debutant shines in convincing victory over Wales