Lydiate aiming to bring the Wallabies pack to a halt
5 November 2010 12:22
Dan Lydiate (background) is hoping the Welsh pack can rise to the challenge when they face Australia this Saturday
Dan Lydiate is aiming to bring Australia's dominant back-row to a halt at the Millennium Stadium on Saturday.
The 22-year-old endured a frustrating first start for Wales against a rampaging Wallabies pack in last year's disappointing 33-12 defeat.
But the Newport Gwent Dragons man feels he is better for the experience and ready to do whatever it takes to keep David Pocock and co under wraps.
"Last year it was all new to me, it was my debut and I struggled to take it all in," admitted Lydiate, who starts the Invesco Perpetual Series opener on the blindside flank.
"I found it hard to find my feet with the intensity and magnitude of the game. This year I know exactly what is coming and can't wait.
"I have to work my way up and earn the respect of my peers that's what I want to do on Saturday. I'm taking it one game at a time and just focusing on Saturday's game and the Wallabies.
"We have to go hell for leather at the break down. David Pocock turned us over loads last year. That's something we have to deal with, we have to get quick ball. He slows down every game he plays in and is a quality player.
"But they're all dangerous at the breakdown area and we have to combat that. Rocky Elsom's a quality player and played awesomely on the weekend so lining-up opposite him is a challenge but also one that I'm looking forward to. He's an awesome player, athlete and captain."
Despite respecting each member of the Wallaby eight, Lydiate is hoping Wales' tight five can put himself and back-row colleagues Sam Warburton and Jonathan Thomas on the front foot with an overpowering display.
"Our front five are massive and each one of them is a quality player," added Lydiate.
"They're not far off being the best front five in the world so it's awesome to have guys like that in front of you. As a back-row we have to step up to the challenge as well.
"I'm going to be as physical as I can, disrupt them as much as I can and I know the other guys will be doing the same. We all have jobs to do and if we all look after our own jobs it will come together collectively."
The Half a Game initiative is currently sweeping across Wales and proving a major success. The scheme aims to give every young player at least half a game every weekend. WRU TV recently visited a festival in Narberth where clubs have fully embraced the initiative.
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Llandovery made it three in a row when they defeated Aberavon in the final of the National Foster's 7s at BT Sport Cardiff Arms Park on Sunday. On another eventful day of sevens, Newport claimed the Plate and the Dragons won the women's crown
Last week saw Cardiff welcome players from around the world for the 21st Golden Oldies Festival. The tournament features players over 35 years of age, and this year's event saw a select few represent the WRU in a 'friendly' against the Wooden Spoon.
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.
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