The Japan tour is a huge opportunity for Welsh players says Jones
Wales assistant coach Mark Jones believes this summer's two-test tour to Japan will be the perfect platform for players to make their mark on the international scene.
The RBS 6 Nations Champions face Japan in Osaka on June 8th and then in Tokyo seven days later and the tour will be vital in the development of new leaders in the Welsh camp according to Jones.
"This summer is a great opportunity for players to make their mark with Wales," said Jones.
"It's a chance for us to find out what the players are about, see some on the international stage for the first time and see some step up and lead the team.
"The World Cup is only two years away and players need to start putting their mark down now.
"If you look back at the 2009 tour, players came through, put their hands up and look where they are now. This is a huge opportunity for this squad.
"It's a chance for the players to work closely with international coaches, experience an overseas tour, see how they cope with it and test themselves on this stage."
The last time Wales visited Japan in 2001, Jones played and scored in the first test and he knows the squad will have to hit the ground running this time around.
"It's going to be vital that we start well out there," he added.
" People remember that we won the two tests in Japan in 2001 but we actually lost our first tour game against Suntory and this time we don't have that luxury as we are straight into the tests.
"The conditions are very different, it's extremely humid and Japan will be coming into the game on the back of five matches so they will be ready for us.
"We will have to adapt to the environment quickly as we know they have got players that can score some great tries."
Jones, who is attack coach at the Scarlets, was part of the successful coaching team that led Wales to the Six Nations title back in March. He links up again with Wales this summer and has been pleased by what he has seen from the training squad so far.
"We had the players in training this week and it's gone really well.
"We've introduced the players to the style of play we are looking for and it's all been picked up really quickly.
"We want to create a culture which provides a framework but we are looking for players to take ownership and leadership on the pitch and this is something that has started well."
WRU chief executive Martyn Phillips hosted the second meeting of the WRU Youth Board last weekend ahead of the Judgement Day IV regional double-header. Tthe board, made up of 15 under-21-year-olds from around Wales, heard presentations from head of participation Ryan Jones, policy and integrity manager Jeremy Rogers and national women's rugby manager Caroline Spanton, with Pro Rugby Wales CEO Mark Davies also on hand to hear the range of views aired.
Wales duo Rhun Williams and Liam Belcher, who makes a welcome return after five months of injury woe, look ahead to next month's World Rugby U20 Championship in Manchester where they will face Ireland, Georgia and New Zealand.
Whenever Bedlinog tackle Penallta a massive fixure is guaranteed but this Sunday there will be even more emphasis placed on the two rivals when they contest the SSE Swalec Plate final at Principality Stadium.
Ahead of their SSE SWALEC Bowl Final clash with Taffs Well at Principality Stadium on Sunday, Burry Port share their #FABXV nomination with WRUTV in the search for Welsh rugby's greatest volunteers. Everyone can get involved by sending nominations via twitter to @WRU_Community using the hashtag #FABXV
Cardiff Blues prop Gethin Jenkins and Ospreys centre Ben John look ahead to the first game at Principality Stadium in Saturday's double header which is promising to be a special occasion for all Welsh fans.
Carmarthen Quins Director of Rugby Ian Jones and committee member Jeff Thomas along with Llandovery chairman Handel Davies look ahead to Sunday's SSE SWALEC Cup showdown where both teams are out to prove 'West is best'
SWALEC ambassador Shane WIlliams is looking forward to Sunday's Finals Day where the Cup, Bowl and Plate offers a great opportunity for players and teams to experience the magic of playing at Principality Stadium
Carmarthen Quins coach Richard Kelly believes it is an exciting time to be part of the Scarlets region as his side take on local rivals Llandovery in the SSE Swalec Cup final on Sunday, as WRU TV's Graeme Gillespie discovers