Wales have qualified for WXV 2 2024 after a dominant second-half display helped the hosts to a 52-20 victory against Spain in Cardiff.

The match was very much in the balance at the break as Wales took a slender 21-20 advantage into the interval after each team crossed the whitewash three times in an entertaining opening half.

However, the home side scored a further five unanswered tries after the break to race clear and book their ticket to South Africa for WXV 2 in September and October. Spain will compete in WXV 3 in Dubai.

Carys Cox finished the match with a hat-trick, while Player of the Match Alisha Joyce-Butchers (twice), Alex Callender, Abbie Fleming and Jenny Hesketh also scored tries for Wales.

Keira Bevan kicked 10 points for the hosts, while Lleucu George converted Cox’s third and final try late on.

Spain conceded Callender’s opening try within four minutes and fell further behind when Fleming went over following a TMO check, Bevan converting both.

They refused to lie down, though, and after Cox had been shown a yellow card, fly-half Amalia Argudo got the visitors on the scoreboard with a penalty.

Argudo was heavily involved again, taking her side deep into Welsh territory with a scintillating break, as prop Ines Antolinez burrowed over from close range. The fly-half converted to pull Spain within four points.

With Cox still in the sin bin, Spain further capitalised on their numerical advantage as Claudia Peña touched down in the 32nd minute to give her side the lead for the first time.

Joyce-Butchers scored her first try of the match four minutes later as Wales reclaimed the lead, though, Bevan adding her third conversion to take them six points clear.

There was still time for Spain to hit back before the break, however, as Claudia Perez came off her wing to take advantage of a well-worked lineout move. The conversion was missed, though, meaning the hosts remained in front by a single point at half-time.

It took less than six minutes for Cox to strike in the second half, popping up on the right wing and stepping through three attempted tackles to score.

Bevan added her fourth conversion of the evening, something she repeated 10 minutes later after Joyce-Butchers claimed her second try of the night, following a TMO check.

As Spanish legs began to tire, Wales crossed the whitewash another three times as Cox added another two scores to her tally, either side of a Hesketh effort.