Wilson reckons Wales Under-20's stars can make a real impact
Danny Wilson has urged Wales' under-20 starlets to take the next step into senior regional rugby.
The Scarlets forwards coach stepped down from his role in charge of Wales Under-20 following their second-place finish at the Junior World Championship.
But he is confident a host of the impressive youngsters can make a major impression on the regional stage at Parc y Scarlets.
"Obviously Jordan has been spoken about a lot, he is quite a talent, but there are a number of players from that squad who can come through," said Wilson.
"I was really impressed by Steff Hughes at centre. We lost Corey Allen before the tournament and we thought that was going to be a huge boots to fill, but Steff stepped up and did an excellent job.
"Scrum-half Rhodri Williams had a superb World Cup. He is a player who is mature beyond his years and it feels like you are dealing with a seasoned 25 or 26-year-old pro not a 20-year-old kid. He also has the experience of playing Heineken Cup two seasons ago.
"Up front you have got the likes of Carwyn Jones in the second row, Gareth Thomas in the front row, guys who played a lot of rugby during that tournament and the Six Nations and who I am sure will come through for the Scarlets in the next couple of years."
Wilson admits the rookies will face serious competition for places but he is confident they will reap the rewards of the selection battles.
"It will be tough for them to make the breakthrough, but that is how it should be," added Wilson.
"They are going to be putting themselves against some good players and will have to earn their opportunity, but because in Wales we are reliant on these boys coming through they will get that opportunity."
Coach Richard Hodges is hoping Wales U20 can put a disappointing campaign behind them when they tackle Japan tomorrow as they look to finish the U20 Championship strongly to secure a good seeding for next year's tournament.
Wales U20 coach Richard Hodges is targeting three wins from three games in the Under 20 Championship after suffering defeat to England on Saturday. However, as WRU TV's Liz Jones discovers, he is concerned about the threat Japan pose tomorrow.
Wales defence coach Shaun Edwards is looking for physical and mental toughness from the 47-man World Cup training squad which was revealed yesterday and he added he is looking forward to seeing which players are prepared to dig the deepest.
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Wales coach Warren Gatland runs the rule over his squad at the start of the Rugby World Cup preparations in this week's Principality Welsh Rugby Union Podcast. He explains the injuries and also the situation surrounding No 8 Toby Faletau. Blues back Rhys Patchell describes the training camp, while Wales U20 win Josh Adams sums up; their World Rugby Championships campaign.
WRU National Academy Coaching manager Allan Lewis will retire, a new Elite Coach Development Manager post has been created and WRU international skills coach Jason Strange will now fulfil his WRU role on a full time basis.
Defending champions England powered their way to a 30-16 victory over Wales at Stadio San Michele, Calvisano, in the World Rugby U20 Championship, showing they aren't going to give away their crown easily.