WARREN Gatland praised Dragons centre Tyler Morgan for going through the pain barrier to score his first try for Wales on his return to the Test stage.

The 23-year-old from Caerleon won his fifth cap against Tonga at Principality Stadium and provided the sixth of ten scores when he finished down the left wing in the second half.

The Dragons outside centre was making his return to the international arena after a stop-start Wales career that featured a debut against Ireland in the World Cup warm-up in 2015, starts against Fiji and South Africa in the tournament and then an appearance in Samoa in 2017.

Injuries have stalled the talented back's progress and another blow in the early stages jeopardised Morgan’s outing as deputy for Lions ace Jonathan Davies – only for the management to ask him to dig deep to play the entire Test.

“I thought Tyler did alright,” said Gatland. “It was pleasing for him to get through 80 minutes, he popped a rib in that first half and I thought he could stick it out.

“The last thing he needed was to be taken off the field with an injury, so they strapped him up at half-time and he got through the second half.

“The midfield got better and better as the game went on, that combination with Owen (Watkin) creating turnovers and ripping the ball from the Tongans.

“They put the ball through their hands nicely and had some good footwork, so I was pleased with the midfield.

“They are still relatively quiet on the pitch and that will come with a bit more experience, but they are two players who are for the future and hopefully they can stay injury-free.”

South Wales Argus:

Gatland hailed his squad’s strength in depth after his side ran riot in the second half for an eight successive Test win.

Wales' winning sequence is their longest since the 2004-05 season, and victory over South Africa next weekend would complete a first autumn Tests clean sweep.

The Wales coach accepts there will be heartache for several squad members when it comes to World Cup selection next year.

"There were a lot of players out there who did that," Gatland replied at his post-match press conference when asked about who impressed him.

"As the game went on a lot of those individuals got better and more comfortable, especially in that second half.

"There's definitely some real questions in terms of picking the (World Cup) squad.

"We've got 40 players and you think eight or nine of them are going to miss out on the World Cup squad.

"Some players are very aware of how important the next six months are.

"We're in a good place at the moment. We're building nicely and there's some good competition."

Tonga, beaten on all eight previous encounters against Wales, gave the hosts a scare by wiping out an 18-point lead.

But that was the signal for Wales to cut loose and post their highest points total since beating Namibia 81-7 during the 2011 World Cup in New Zealand.

"We put ourselves in a bit of a hole and dug ourselves out of it in the second half with some outstanding rugby," Gatland said.

"We spoke at half-time that in previous games in the autumn we have started well against teams and allowed them to score points.

"That group of players did a fantastic job. We knew in Test match rugby sometimes it just does not happen. It can take 50 or 60 minutes to wear a side down and we were able to capitalise on that."