New Zealand, the world's leading Sevens side, put paid to Welsh dreams in the Hong Kong Cup quarter-finals but Johnathan Edwards's side gained huge respect for their battling efforts ahead of the Australian challenge coming up.
"I was very proud of the effort we made in our final two games and we now need to consolidate on those performances and become even more competitive among the top nations," said Edwards.
"We made the All Blacks work very hard for their victory and I think we once again showed we are capable of matching the intensity of the top teams.
"The youngsters in the squad are growing with every training session and game and events like these are brilliant for their development. It is only by getting out there and facing the best teams in the world that you will eventually get better."
Despite losing to Fiji and New Zealand in their final two outings, Wales reached the top eight in Hong Kong and Coach Gareth Baber added: "They've worked really hard together on and off the pitch and there is no doubt we are making great progress as a squad.
"We really pressurised the All Blacks and I think their coach must have been a bit worried when Richie Pugh scored his try to bring it back to 12-7. There were one or two more openings we created, but I was happy with the way we have competed against the top two Sevens nations in the world in Hong Kong."
Wales convincingly beat Zimbabwe and Korea in their Pool before going down 15-0 to Fiji in their final Pool match. That was good enough to earn them a place in the Cup quarter-finals as one of the two best runners-up.