Colin Charvis insists he is tough enough to handle one of the hardest jobs in world rugby - captain of Wales.
The controversial backrower has completed a remarkable comeback from a national figure of hate to captain of Wales in the space of seven months.
It was a surprise choice given that Charvis was voted the second most hated man in Wales - even ahead of Saddam Hussein - and allegedly received death threats after the shock defeat to Italy last February.
But thick skinned Charvis reckons his public savaging has hardened him up as Wales prepare to head down under for the World Cup.
"You grown into roles and the captaincy is a role I have learned a lot about," said Charvis.
"I've seen both sides of being Welsh captain. In fact I've seen the good and bad sides of a lot of things, including the publicity.
"I just had to take the criticism that was directed my way last time on the chin, I wasn't going to let it stop me. All I ever concentrated on was getting back into the team.
"Things are sure to be different this time because things always change and I am learning all the time. I don't want to be stagnant, I want to keep developing both as a player and captain."
Charvis and the rest of the Wales squad fly out today for hot weather
Meanwhile previous favourite for the job, Martyn Williams, revealed he wants to lead Wales again - perhaps even at the 2007 World Cup.
Flanker Williams ruled himself out of the captaincy because of family pressures of balancing the job with helping look after an eight-month old baby girl.
The British Lion has been criticised by some for turning his back on the honour but he insists that he does want the job when the time is right.
"I would never right it off and if I was ever offered the chance again when I felt that the time is right then I would jump at the chance, but I just felt that Colin was the best man for the job this time around," he said.
"It was a tough decision because it is such an honour to be asked."
Wales Under 18 captain Callum Bradbury is delighted to have seen his side claim a narrow 18-17 victory against a strong SA Schools 'A' side to end the three-match Under 19 International Series in South Africa on a high note.
The Wales U18 squad spent an emotional day in the drug-riddled townnship of Hout Bay. Hout Bay Warriors President Fred Johannes said the visit was 'the talk of the town' and will dream about the day everyday for the rest of his life.
RGC 1404's new head coach Mark Jones is hoping to build 'something special' in north Wales and is already looking forward to the development region participating in the Principality Premiership for the very first time.
A joint venture between the WRU and Admiral saw hundreds of children enjoy the Admiral Festival of Rugby held at the National Centre of Excellence at the weekend where Welsh internationals Sam Warburton, Scott Williams and Rob Evans were in attendance.
Wll Jones leads Wales U18s into battle this afternoon against Italy where the Welsh side will be seeking to bounce back from their narrow defeat to SA Schools in their opening clash of the U19 International Series
All four regions attended a successful training camp staged last weekend at the WRU National Centre of Excellence. It was a chance for new Wales Women's head coach Rowland Phillips to deliver his key messages to players and coaches as he prepares for the new season.
Wales U18 Team Manager Gethin Watts believes the next couple of weeks will be 'extremely beneficial' to the future of Welsh rugby as his side prepare to take part in the Under 19 International Series being staged in South Africa.
The WRU is searching for 12 new rugby development apprentices following a successful first year of its WRU Coach Core programme. Craig Duncan and Jess Hancock have flourished in the first year of the programme which has given them a real direction in their lives.
The WRU signed TV comedian Rhod Gilbert up to a 'Coaching Children Level 1' course before letting him loose on an U8s side at Whitland Junior Borderers - we went behind the scenes to film the making of 'Rhod Gilbert's Work Experience' see the results here.
Llandovery are aiming to make it three titles in a row in this year's Foster's National 7s being held at BT Sport Cardiff Arms Park on Sunday 28 August. Drovers assistant coach Simon Davies and Lee Rees assess their sides chances
A pioneering strength and conditioning programme has been delivered to more than 8000 boys and girls at hub schools throughout Wales this season, helping to develop stronger, more flexible athletes for rugby and other sports.
The Singha Premiership Rugby 7s Series returns to the BT Sport Cardiff Arms Park on July 22nd when all four Welsh regions go head to head. Scarlets skills coach Dai Flanagan and Blues Elite Performance Pathway Manager Richard Hodges along with current Welsh squad members were at the launch of this season's event