Women's Rugby World Cup 2002: May 12th-26th Barcelona
19 April 2002 10:15am
Led by the youngest captain in the competition, 20-year-old Melissa Berry, Wales face Australia in their opening match at the Santboiana Stadium on May 13th.
The squad has a good mix of youth and experience. The former comes in the shape of UWIC's Hayley Baxter, Naomi Thomas and Kerry Jenkins with the likes of the world's most capped player Liza Burgess and Louise Rickard providing the experience.
As always there is a player who makes a late run for the squad and this has come in the shape of Sam Mason. The 19-year-old UWIC prop has impressed with the Wales U19 squad enough to book her ticket to Spain where she will look to put pressure on fellow front rowers Dawn Mason and Catrin Edwards.
Hooker Jamie Kift has recovered from a knee ligament injury to take her place in the squad following two months out and with eight fellow Clifton team mates including Jackie Morgan, April Dent, Pip Minto and Clare Flowers in the squad, the new English cup holders will have a strong representation in Barcelona.
Coach Williams has chosen three scrum halves in the shape of Jenkins, Walkley and Owens and with all three having started a Six Nations game they will be looking to impress in training in order to get that number nine shirt in the opening match against Australia.
With the opening match involving the 8th and 9th ranked teams, Wales must win in order to progress in to the latter stages. If successful, they are likely to face New Zealand in the second round on Friday May 17th.
Wales Sevens are looking to re-group after a disappointing tournament last time out in South Africa. The next double leg in New Zealand and Las Vegas offers Gareth Williams a chance to redeem themselves.
Wales Women's head coach Rhys Edwards was at Llandovery to see the conclusion of an entertaining Women's Regional championship where any one of three teams were in contention for title glory on the last day of action.
Christmas has come early at Glynneath rugby club, one of a number around Wales who have received an array of merchandise and equipment this December courtesy of the Welsh Rugby Union's £750,000 participation points scheme.
The WRU have been delivering on the scheme - which gives individual clubs access to up to £5,000 worth of supplies and equipment each for the 2014/2015 season - over the last two weeks and today (Friday) were received by a special guest in Glynneath, club president and pitch marker Max Boyce.
As the countdown continues for RWC2015, Tournament Chief Executive Debbie Jevans visited the Millennium Stadium to discuss preparations for the eight matches and reveal the positive news that 100,000 tickets for games at the home of Welsh rugby have sold in the last seven days.
Jason Harries is targeting a first win on the World Series circuit this season with Wales. The series returns to action this weekend in Dubai where Harries is part of a team hoping to build from its efforts in round one in October.
Wales skipper Jevon Groves says his side have addressed a few points from Gold Coast and aim to 'hit the ground running' in the next two rounds of the World Series, kicking off with this weekend in Dubai before heading off to South Africa next week.
Wales Sevens manager Steff Thomas is hopeful his side can build from a quarter-final spot in the opening round of the World Series in Australia when his side take part in the forthcoming double header in Dubai and South Africa.