Scrum half Amy Day whips the ball out against France during her 50th cap appearance.
Wales began their Rugby Women's World Cup campaign beaten but unbowed after France run out 26-0 victor's in Marcoussis in front of a partisan crowd.
Rachel Taylor's side put in a gutsy defensive display but ultimately France's clinical ability to score when chances offered themselves proved Wales' downfall.
The hosts scored four tries in all, their bonus point victory moving them top of Pool C.
At times in the first half Wales kept the home crowd subdued with a display full of purpose and endeavour. Wales actually had the better of the opening exchanges but once wing Marion Lievre plucked a pass from fly half Elinor Snowsill out of the air to race 50m to score, France were a different proposition.
The French driving maul was a constant threat but Wales countered with some plucky defence but the hosts were not to be deterred and crossed twice more through Shannon Izar and Lievre who collected her second of the evening. With Sandrine Agricole converting two of the three tries, France held a comfortable 19-0 lead at the break which didn't do justice to the effort put in by Wales.
France, one of the favourites for the tournament, found Wales a tough nut to crack in the second half but sealed the win late on when replacement Elodie Poublan pounced to secure the bonus point win.
Wales head coach Rhys Edwards admitted the defeat was a tough one to take.
"I have to say I am more than pleased in how we coped with the environment and more so how we dictated the majority if the game.
"The defeat is a tough one to take considering how dominant we were but we couldn't get the scoreboard ticking over.
"To concede an interception try after being so dominant took the wind from our sails and gave them a bit of a heads up. A team like France, even though they were on the back foot for the majority of the time, are a class outfit on the front foot and any opportunity they got they executed and took the two tries really well in the first spell.
"After halftime our defence kept us in the game at times but to concede a late try is a bitter pill. Some of the girls have played their best games in a Welsh shirt so that at this point of the tournament is a very pleasing position to be in.
"We knew it was going to be tough, it's a shame it wasn't closer but all in all we asked for a performance and at times we had that so the girls have laid the foundations to go into the next game and kick on and get the result they deserve."
Wales' next game is against Australia who had a comfortable win over South Africa earlier in the day.
Tries: Lievre 2, Izar, Poublan; Cons: Agricole 2, Le Duff
The Webb Ellis Cup visited Lampeter on Monday to recognise the fact that the town is celebrating a major milestone as it is believed the first ever game of rugby played in Wales, was in fact played in Lampeter 150 years ago.
Cardiff Blues U18 Girls will go into Sunday's Gemau Cymru with an extra spring in their step after Welsh internationals Elinor Snowsill and Philippa Tuttiett offered some last minute tips at a training session earlier this week.
Rob Howley and Josh Lewsey addressed more than 250 community club coaches and referees at the first WRU National Community Conference on the weekend. The volunteers benefitted from coaching masterclasses and workshops in a bid to connect all levels of the rugby pathway in Wales.
UEFA has today confirmed the Football Association of Wales (FAW) has been successful in its bid for the Millennium Stadium to host the 2017 UEFA Champions League Final on Saturday 3rd June, 2017 (kick-off: 19.45hrs GMT).
The winners of a filmmaking competition organised by the education charity Into Film and the WRU enjoyed a behind the scenes tour of the Millennium Stadium - and a chance to be photographed with the WRU's fire-breathing, rugby loving mascot, Scorch The Dragon, and Welsh international, Jake Ball.