Mark Jones reckons Wales will have to earn their stripes to mark their 600th Test match in style against the USA this weekend.
The youthful Dragons hope to round off their two-Test tour to North America with victory at Toyota Park in Chicago on Saturday.
Wales have never lost to the Eagles in six previous meetings but Jones believes his team-mates will need to be at their best in order to celebrate the historic milestone.
Jones, 29, said: "It's vital that the ship is in order when Warren Gatland and the senior coaches come back from the British Lions for the autumn - it's a big opportunity for all the players to stamp their authority on the tour.
"Everyone will go back and play in the Magners League or Heineken Cup and when the autumn and Six Nations next season comes around, there is a real opportunity for everyone to put their hand up for selection."
Jones is one of only two survivors - along with Cardiff Blues scrum-half Gareth Cooper - on this tour who figured in Wales' 500th international on the summer trip to Japan eight years ago.
Gavin Henson and Jamie Robinson made their Wales debuts in the 64-10 romp in Osaka as a young wing sensation by the name of Shane Williams bagged four tries.
Jones recalled: "I was like a lot of the young players in the squad now. The 500th Test was only my third cap for Wales but I remember it was a roasting hot day and extremely humid.
"Gav made his debut and Shane showed us what he could do so it goes to show the young players on this tour that you can achieve greatness.
"Some have won 60+ caps, others have made several British Lions tours and that is what potentially lies ahead for them.
"Japan was a tough tour because you had to deal with a different language and different style of food but it really matured me as a young player - it was hugely beneficial.
"Although the language isn't a problem in America, the culture is different and it's warm. Obviously, you are a long way from home but it's a great place to tour. Hopefully, all the players, including the senior lads, will come back much stronger for the experience."
Jones has regained full fitness after sitting out last weekend's opening Test against Canada in Toronto with a minor knee injury.
But the Scarlets flyer, capped 46 times, admits his career has come full circle since making his debut as a replacement against England in 2001.
Jones said: "A lot has happened in my career since Wales' 500th game and I've almost come full circle.
"I've had a lot of nasty injuries and there were times when I thought I would never play rugby again. So to be able to put the Wales shirt on 100 games later - although I've not played in them all - is something I'm really proud of.
"The team will want to get the result like we did in the 500th. I scored my first Test try so I'd be delighted if I can sneak over for another one."
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.
A joint venture between the WRU and Admiral saw hundreds of children enjoy the Admiral Festival of Rugby held at the National Centre of Excellence at the weekend where Welsh internationals Sam Warburton, Scott Williams and Rob Evans were in attendance.
Wll Jones leads Wales U18s into battle this afternoon against Italy where the Welsh side will be seeking to bounce back from their narrow defeat to SA Schools in their opening clash of the U19 International Series
All four regions attended a successful training camp staged last weekend at the WRU National Centre of Excellence. It was a chance for new Wales Women's head coach Rowland Phillips to deliver his key messages to players and coaches as he prepares for the new season.
Wales U18 Team Manager Gethin Watts believes the next couple of weeks will be 'extremely beneficial' to the future of Welsh rugby as his side prepare to take part in the Under 19 International Series being staged in South Africa.
The WRU is searching for 12 new rugby development apprentices following a successful first year of its WRU Coach Core programme. Craig Duncan and Jess Hancock have flourished in the first year of the programme which has given them a real direction in their lives.
The WRU signed TV comedian Rhod Gilbert up to a 'Coaching Children Level 1' course before letting him loose on an U8s side at Whitland Junior Borderers - we went behind the scenes to film the making of 'Rhod Gilbert's Work Experience' see the results here.
Llandovery are aiming to make it three titles in a row in this year's Foster's National 7s being held at BT Sport Cardiff Arms Park on Sunday 28 August. Drovers assistant coach Simon Davies and Lee Rees assess their sides chances
A pioneering strength and conditioning programme has been delivered to more than 8000 boys and girls at hub schools throughout Wales this season, helping to develop stronger, more flexible athletes for rugby and other sports.
The Singha Premiership Rugby 7s Series returns to the BT Sport Cardiff Arms Park on July 22nd when all four Welsh regions go head to head. Scarlets skills coach Dai Flanagan and Blues Elite Performance Pathway Manager Richard Hodges along with current Welsh squad members were at the launch of this season's event