Gareth Bale inspired Wales to only their second win in seven games under manager Chris Coleman by beating Austria in a friendly in Swansea.
The winger drilled the opener low into the corner after cutting in off the wing for his fourth goal in four games.
Wales were lucky to reach half-time ahead as Boaz Myhill was tested.
Bale then crossed for substitute Sam Vokes to head Wales' second, and the home side held on despite Marc Janko's header for the often superior visitors.
It was far from a convincing victory or performance from Wales, who struggled to trouble the visitors with any semblance of sustained pressure by failing to keep possession.
Wales v Austria past meetings
- 1954 - Austria
Wales (friendly, Vienna)
- 1955 - Wales
Austria (friendly, Wrexham)
- 1974 - Austria
Wales (ECQ, Vienna)
- 1975 - Wales
Austria (ECQ, Wrexham)
- 1991 - Austria
Wales (friendly, Vienna)
- 2005 - Wales
Austria (WCQ, Cardiff)
- 2005 Austria
Wales (WCQ, Vienna)
But victory should at least restore some confidence for a side who had lost six of their last seven as they head for next month's World Cup qualifying double-header away to Scotland and home to Croatia.
Having managed just three goals in his previous six games in charge, Coleman hoped the combination of Bale, Craig Bellamy and Aaron Ramsey together for the first time during his tenure would inject greater attacking threat into his ailing side.
That prospect was snatched away on the morning of the match when Arsenal midfielder
Ramsey returned to his club for treatment on a calf injury.
But Bale was on hand and the Tottenham Hotspur star once again demonstrated how heavily Wales depend on his pace to provide meaningful penetration.
Wales lined up with an unfamiliar formation with Bellamy the lone striker, with Jack Collison providing support on the left flank and Bale on the right.
Austria, cheered on by fewer than 50 supporters tucked away in one of the corners behind the goal, arrived in Wales with one win in their last 17 away games.
But they warmed to their task quickly on a bitterly cold night, going close twice in the opening 10 minutes.
First Adam Matthews cleared off the line as Ashley Williams diverted the ball towards his own goal from a corner before Myhill palmed away a 20-yard drive from Andreas Ivanschitz.
Bale gave first notice of his pace and power by surging past Markus Suttner, and the Austria left-back was caught on his heels once more for Wales' opener on 21 minutes.
Joe Allen's lofted ball released Bale down the right flank and there was a certain inevitability in the accuracy of the finish as the winger cut in onto his left foot and drilled the ball into the bottom corner for his 10th international goal.
The visitors proceeded to dominate the remainder of the first half and a combination of bad luck and poor finishing denied them a deserved equaliser.
A generous off-side call first saved Wales as the unmarked Emanuel Pogatetz headed in from five yards. The decision was given against Janko as he headed the ball back towards goal from the far post.
Ivanschitz wasted a great chance in front of goal after Myhill palmed away a fierce drive from Marko Arnautovic.
One of many superb set-piece deliveries from Arnautovic set up another chance as Myhill was again called into action to save from Sebastian Prodl's header.
Myhill was then almost caught out by an audacious 35-yard attempt from Alaba that hit the foot of the post. Moments later, a last-ditch sliding tackle from Sam Ricketts denied Aston Villa's Andreas Weimann.
Wales returned from the welcome break without Bellamy and David Vaughan, replaced by Vokes and Andy King.
And Vokes wasted little time in justifying his introduction by doubling Wales' advantage.
Bale again found himself behind the Austria defence and his cross gave was powerfully met by Vokes to score his fifth goal for Wales.
The home side looked vulnerable all night from crosses and this time there was no escape as captain Janko buried his header to halve the deficit with 15 minutes remaining.
Having delivered the cross that went over the head of Williams for the goal, Arnautovic then went close with a deft curler that had Myhill scampering.
Austria continued to press for the equaliser, but Wales survived without much alarm to secure their second successive friendly win at the Liberty Stadium, the venue for next month's qualifier with Croatia.
Live text and stats
Wednesday, 6 February 2013
- Final Result
- Full Time
- 90:00+3:02 The referee ends the match.
- 90:00+2:30 Franz Schiemer takes a shot. Save by Boaz Myhill.
- 90:00+0:58 Shot from just outside the box by Jakob Jantscher misses to the left of the target.
- 90:00+0:31 Robert Almer takes the free kick.
- 90:00+0:31 Booking Hal Robson-Kanu goes into the referee's book.
- 90:00+0:28 Hal Robson-Kanu challenges David Alaba unfairly and gives away a free kick.
- 89:49 Marc Janko has a headed effort at goal from deep inside the area missing to the left of the target.
- 87:39 Hal Robson-Kanu gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Franz Schiemer. Franz Schiemer takes the free kick.
- 86:51 Direct free kick taken by Samuel Ricketts.
- 86:51 Substitution Markus Suttner leaves the field to be replaced by Franz Schiemer.
- 86:51 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Chris Gunter by David Alaba.
- 84:46 Joe Ledley concedes a free kick for a foul on Christoph Leitgeb. Strike comes in from Marko Arnautovic from the free kick,
blocked by Sam Vokes. Inswinging corner taken by Zlatko Junuzovic, save by Boaz Myhill.
- 84:09 Free kick awarded for a foul by Florian Klein on Hal Robson-Kanu. Joe Allen restarts play with the free kick.
- 83:18 Substitution Jack Collison goes off and Simon Church comes on.
- 79:12 Shot by David Alaba from outside the box goes high over the target.
- 75:41 Marko Arnautovic has an effort at goal from the edge of the box that misses to the right of the target.
- 74:47 Substitution Christoph Leitgeb is brought on as a substitute for Veli Kavlak.
- 74:06 Marko Arnautovic provided the assist for the goal.
- 74:06 GOAL - Marc Janko:Wales 2 - 1 Austria Marc Janko grabs a headed goal from inside the six-yard box. Wales 2-1 Austria.
- 71:50 Substitution Chris Gunter on for Adam Matthews.
- 70:31 Effort from the edge of the penalty box by Marko Arnautovic goes wide of the right-hand upright.
- 69:49 David Alaba takes a shot. Samuel Ricketts gets a block in.
- 66:45 Marc Janko is flagged offside by the assistant referee. Boaz Myhill takes the free kick.
- 60:57 Substitution Jakob Jantscher on for Andreas Weimann.
- 60:57 Substitution Andreas Ivanschitz goes off and Zlatko Junuzovic comes on.
- 60:10 The official flags Sam Vokes offside. Robert Almer restarts play with the free kick.
- 59:02 Substitution Hal Robson-Kanu joins the action as a substitute, replacing Gareth Bale.
- 58:20 Effort from the edge of the box by Marc Janko goes wide of the left-hand post. Corner taken by Andreas Ivanschitz from the
left by-line played to the near post, clearance made by Sam Vokes.
- 53:19 Jack Collison crosses the ball, Sam Vokes takes a shot. Emanuel Pogatetz gets a block in. Gareth Bale produces a left-footed
shot from just outside the box that goes wide left of the target.
- 51:22 Assist on the goal came from Gareth Bale.
- 51:22 GOAL - Sam Vokes:Wales 2 - 0 Austria Sam Vokes finds the net with a headed goal from just inside the penalty box. Wales 2-0 Austria.
- 49:17 Short corner taken by Gareth Bale from the right by-line.
- 48:01 Joe Ledley produces a left-footed shot from just outside the area that goes harmlessly over the target.
- 47:09 Gareth Bale takes a shot. Save by Robert Almer.
- 46:18 Unfair challenge on Sam Vokes by Sebastien Prodl results in a free kick. Joe Allen takes the direct free kick.
- 45:47 Sam Vokes challenges David Alaba unfairly and gives away a free kick. Emanuel Pogatetz takes the free kick.
- 45:01 The referee blows his whistle to start the second half.
- 45:01 Substitution Andy King joins the action as a substitute, replacing David Vaughan.
- 45:01 Substitution Sam Vokes replaces Craig Bellamy.
- Half Time
- 45:00+1:14 The match has reached half-time.
- 45:00+0:38 Andreas Weimann takes a shot. Blocked by Samuel Ricketts.
- 44:37 David Alaba takes a shot from a long way out and hits the post.
- 43:45 Andreas Ivanschitz has an effort at goal from just outside the box which goes wide of the right-hand upright. Corner taken
by Andreas Ivanschitz played to the near post, clearance made by Gareth Bale.
- 38:14 Free kick taken by Ashley Williams.
- 38:14 Booking Florian Klein receives a yellow card.
- 38:05 Florian Klein concedes a free kick for a foul on Ben Davies.
- 36:43 Free kick awarded for a foul by Ashley Williams on Marc Janko. The ball is crossed by Andreas Ivanschitz, Sebastien Prodl
takes a shot. Boaz Myhill makes a save. Corner taken by David Alaba played to the near post, clearance by Joe Ledley.
- 35:36 Marko Arnautovic takes a shot. Save made by Boaz Myhill. Shot from deep inside the area by Andreas Ivanschitz clears the bar.
- 33:35 Free kick awarded for a foul by Jack Collison on Florian Klein. Robert Almer takes the direct free kick.
- 32:24 Foul by Veli Kavlak on David Vaughan, free kick awarded. Gareth Bale has an effort direct from the free kick.
- 31:29 Marko Arnautovic takes a shot. Save by Boaz Myhill.
- 30:18 Ben Davies challenges David Alaba unfairly and gives away a free kick. Free kick crossed left-footed by Andreas Ivanschitz
from right channel. Marc Janko is ruled offside. Indirect free kick taken by Boaz Myhill.
- 28:40 Joe Allen concedes a free kick for a foul on Veli Kavlak. A cross is delivered by Andreas Ivanschitz, Emanuel Pogatetz takes
a shot. Ben Davies gets a block in. Corner taken left-footed by David Alaba from the right by-line to the near post, Gareth
Bale manages to make a clearance.
- 26:38 Marc Janko is flagged offside by the assistant referee. Joe Allen takes the direct free kick.
- 25:56 Foul by Veli Kavlak on Ben Davies, free kick awarded. Direct free kick taken by David Vaughan.
- 25:31 Foul by David Alaba on Joe Allen, free kick awarded. Joe Allen takes the free kick.
- 22:53 The ball is sent over by Gareth Bale, save by Robert Almer.
- 20:48 Assist on the goal came from Joe Allen.
- 20:48 GOAL - Gareth Bale:Wales 1 - 0 Austria Goal scored by Gareth Bale from inside the penalty box to the bottom left corner of the goal. Wales 1-0 Austria.
- 20:19 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Gareth Bale by Markus Suttner. Free kick taken by Adam Matthews.
- 16:56 Joe Ledley fouled by Sebastien Prodl, the ref awards a free kick. The free kick is delivered right-footed by Craig Bellamy
from left channel.
- 15:15 Craig Bellamy produces a right-footed shot from deep inside the penalty box which goes wide of the left-hand upright.
- 13:20 Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Andreas Weimann by Ben Davies. David Alaba delivers the ball from the free kick
left-footed from left channel, clearance by Gareth Bale.
- 13:12 Centre by Florian Klein, save by Boaz Myhill.
- 8:50 Andreas Ivanschitz takes a shot. Save by Boaz Myhill.
- 6:05 The ball is swung over by Marko Arnautovic, Boaz Myhill makes a save.
- 5:13 Free kick awarded for a foul by Veli Kavlak on David Vaughan. Samuel Ricketts takes the direct free kick.
- 3:54 Andreas Weimann concedes a free kick for a foul on Jack Collison. Ben Davies takes the direct free kick.
- 2:48 Craig Bellamy is flagged offside by the assistant referee. Sebastien Prodl takes the free kick.
- 1:39 Corner taken left-footed by Andreas Ivanschitz, Ben Davies makes a clearance.
- 0:00 The referee starts the match.
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