Wales coach Steve Hansen has compared his struggling side to the country's soccer team of two years ago, and vows that his men will echo the success of Mark Hughes' players. Hughes turned the country's worst-ever soccer side into Euro 2004 contenders, and Hansen says he can do the same.
Hansen, under fire after a record sixth consecutive Test loss on Saturday, said he wished the fans knew how hard the squad was working.
"This result is just another chapter in the life of this team," the Kiwi
said after Wales secured the Six Nations wooden spoon with a 33-5 loss to France in Paris.
"The results we're getting are not reflecting how much effort the guys
are putting in.
"The Welsh soccer team went through a similar patch and everyone was panning them and booing them. Now look at them. Last season we lost by record margins to England and Ireland, so the improvement is there to see.
"If you keep working hard, you'll get your rewards. I knew how hard this
job would be when I started, but I honestly believe Wales will be a
great team again."
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.
The Wales Under 20 camp are in a quietly confident mood as they face Ireland in the U20 Championship, with Coaching Co-Ordinator Allan Lewis and full back Dafydd Howells targeting a top five finish in the tournament.
Wales U20 may start as favourites against Japan this evening in the U20 Championship, but Team Manager Mark Taylor is warning against complacency. He is also hoping a good win will boost morale and 'kickstart' performances.
Coach Richard Hodges is hoping Wales U20 can put a disappointing campaign behind them when they tackle Japan tomorrow as they look to finish the U20 Championship strongly to secure a good seeding for next year's tournament.