Scrummaging great Graham Price has urged Wales to stop complaining and concentrate on getting their own house in order during Saturday’s make or break Six Nations clash with France.

Former tighthead Price, who started 12 successive Tests in New Zealand and South Africa to become the Lions' most capped prop, warned Wales aren’t gaining anything by branding the championship leaders “cheats”.

Wales loosehead prop Wyn Jones stirred things up ahead of Saturday's Principality Stadium match, saying: “They’ll be a big pack but probably ill-disciplined with that, especially at scrum time," before claiming: “We know they’ll hit and chase and cheat.”

Forwards coach Jonathan Humphreys accused French referee Romain Poite of allowing Ireland tight-head prop Tadhg Furlong to get away with scrummaging at an illegal angle during Wales' 28-14 defeat in Dublin.

And he called on rookie Test official Matt Carley (England) to clamp down on any illegal tactics employed by France in Cardiff.

You can read what was said during the controversial press conference, here.

He said: “I chuckled when I read them. I wouldn’t call what Ireland did cheating, I would call it bending the rules.

“It’s what everybody does, whether it’s the scrum-half feeding the ball crookedly at a scrum or a prop turning in to try and gain an advantage.

Wales forwards coach Jonathan Humphreys addresses the media

“Humphreys has been about long enough – he was a hooker and Wales captain – that he should know all about the dark arts and manipulating the rules.

“I find it laughable Wales are complaining about things players used to be taught to gain an advantage.

“If you bend the rules and don’t get caught, all well and good. The key is stopping your opponent from bending the rules at the scrum, which is down to the Wales front-row."

Price gave a fascinating insight into the novel ways the famous Wales front-row of hooker Bobby Windsor, loosehead prop Charlie Faulkner and he dealt with feared French scrummaging unit of Gerard Cholley, Alain Paco and Robert Paparemborde when the two countries ruled the roost in the Five Nations.

“You can do all the training but what you have got to do is work it out for yourself and sort it when there’s a problem in a match,” he said.

“You don’t just stand there, allowing the opposition to dictate. You have to think on your feet, come up with a solution and implement it.

“Paparemborde, if he could get away with it, would twist and turn inwards to make his opponent go down.

“We countered that with Charlie. Charlie was the only prop around who could deal with Paparemborde. Charlie would keep him square by putting his head under Paparemborde’s ribs and raising it.

“The pain he inflicted was so great Paparemborde wouldn’t twist and get up to his tricks because he risked breaking his ribs – he had to scrummage square and honest.

“There was one match, when Charlie hadn’t been picked and we were in trouble, where the French were able to take us down so low Bobby’s chin was nearly on the ground.

“There wasn’t any way he could hook the ball with a foot so he told scrum-half Gareth Edwards to roll the ball into the scrum and used his head to heel it back.

"Bobby was successful at it so the law was changed with using the head to heel being banned.”

In terms of the current Wales front-row of Jones, hooker Ken Owens and tighthead prop Dillon Lewis that started in Ireland, Price said: “The Welsh scrum is missing the injured Tomas Francis but is getting better.

“The problem is it tired around the 50-minute mark in Ireland. Previous coach Warren Gatland was a master of making substitutions in his front-row at the right time but it’s early days for the new regime and it hasn’t mastered that yet.

“Dillon was fine during the first half but it got to the situation where fatigue had set in ahead of a key scrum near the try-line with Wales in prime attacking territory and looking to go for the jugular.

The key scrum where Dillon Lewis was penalised during Wales' defeat to Ireland

“The scrum went down on Dillon’s side and Poite ordered a reset. Poite went to that side of the scrum for the next attempt so he could see for himself what was happening and the same thing occurred with Dillon rightly being penalised for buckling inwards.

“It happened because he couldn’t hold the weight, which is always a sign of weakness. You can either resist the weight or try and avoid it by going inwards.

"The two things that go first as a prop when you’re tired is your scrummaging and your concentration.

“Ireland realised they had got out of jail and celebrated as if they had won the World Cup. It visibly lifted them and was the decisive moment.”

Price emphasised the importance of the scrum as a foundation pillar for a side, pointing out: “There’s not so many in rugby these days but having a superior scrum was why South Africa won the World Cup.

“If you get on top in the scrum you win over the referee. Invariably, a referee rewards the team going forward with penalties.

“The team getting the reward is able to kick to touch, have the throw to the line-out, drive it and apply more pressure.

“Ireland went down the other end against Wales through being awarded penalties and were able to put the game to bed."

And he warned: “The scrum remains a huge part of the French game – they have never lost sight of its importance – and much of what they do is based on it.

“It’s a new-look French team and scrum. Technically, their scrum looks adequate, is improving and they won’t want Wales to better them at it,” said Price, who was speaking in association with Nigel Jones, experts in dental implants.

Les Bleus tighthead Mohamed Haouas has just two caps, hooker Julien Marchand four, with loosehead Cyril Baille the most experienced on 19 for a total of 25.

In comparison, Jones and Lewis each have 24 with Owens on 75 for a Wales tally of 123.

“When you look at those stats it’s somewhat baffling and concerning Wales have focused on the French scrum rather than the Welsh positives – to me it sends out a worrying message,” concluded Price.