Wales will be hoping to go at least one better than last week when the IRB
World Sevens series comes to its conclusion in Cardiff this weekend.
The Welsh squad reached the semi-final at Twickenham last weekend before
bowing out of the competition to the eventual winners New Zealand.
But with confidence high, the side is on course to exceed all expectation
and, at the same time, bring a welcome smile to the welsh game.
"This Welsh team were a resounding success at Twickenham. We beat Fiji and Argentina, who are among the top sides in the world, and competed well against New Zealand," said Team manager Dai Rees.
"We played some good rugby and picked up some valuable points on the way to
reaching our first semi-final of the cup compeititon.
"Now we face the mouthwatering prospect of taking on England, who won the Hong Kong Sevens title this season, in our final Pool match at the end of Day 1 on Friday night. That promises to be a classic contest.
"The success of last weekend, has taken us to 50 team points for the season. That compares with 18 in all of last season.
"I think those figures show how much we have come on. What's more, the feedback from the players is very positive indeed. They believe that they are
going back to the clubs in better shape and for us and Steve Hansen that is
a real positive.
"Steve has been great, too. He wants to be involved and he sees the sevens squad as an area in which to develop players for the national side. We are
delighted to be playing our part there too."
Wales will be grouped with Russia, France and England this weekend, with
their first game coming on Friday afternoon against the Russians.
After that, they play the French before finishing off their pool matches
with the small matter of a game against another of last weekend's semi
"It's certainly another tough group for us. Russia might not be a household
name on the 15-man circuit, but they are certainly no mugs at 7-a-side.
"France, well, what can you say and England are a very good team as they
proved last week when they reached the semi-finals.
"Having said that, we are confident of putting on a good show especially
infront of our own fans."
WALES SEVENS: Jasson Forster (Newport, captain), Gareth Gravelle (Newport), John Thomas (Swansea), Robin Sowden-Taylor (Cardiff), Arwel Thomas (Swansea), Rhodri Jones (Swansea),
Ben Breeze (Newport), Gareth Baber (Pontypridd), Emyr Lewis (Newport), Matthew Robinson (Swansea), Craig Richards (Whitland), Shaun James (Pontypridd).
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.
Both Bargoed and Swansea were seeking their first win of the Principality Premiership season this afternoon. It proved a fruitful day for the hosts - not only did they win, but Bargoed claimed a try bonus point.
Cardiff managed to keep their unbeaten record at home intact, but only just as Bridgend made them work extremely hard before the Blue and Blacks secured a hard fought Principality Premiership win at the BT Sport Arms Park last night.
Former Wales back row Andy Powell gives a guided tour of The Wern, home of Merthyr RFC, who are determined to prove a lot of people wrong and make their mark in their first season in the Principality Premiership.
Wales Sevens head coach Gareth Williams looks back on the Rio Sevens success where he helped GB win silver. He believes the successful campaign is a huge boost to his Welsh squad as they prepare for another World Series, as WRU TV's Graeme Gillespie discovers
British and Irish Lions head coach Warren Gatland will be heading back home to take on the All Blacks next year where for him, success for 2017 is all about going to New Zealand and winning a Test Series.
Last week all roads led to Eugene Cross Park where defending champions Ebbw Vale hosted this season's launch of the Principality Premiership. WRU TV's Graeme Gillespie was there to capture the thoughts of Damien Hudd, captain of Ebbw Vale, and WRU Head of Performance, Geraint John.
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.
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.