Jenny Hawkins says Wales' effort against USA showed plenty of desire and attitude.
With only 20 days left to go before we depart for the World Cup all the hard work and time spent working towards this exciting event is now paying off.
Over the last few months training has been intense where sessions have included gym, conditioning, skills and game specific training rotations. A training session in particular which stands out was a team visit to Merthyr Mawr sand dunes. Rising to 200 feet - the second tallest dunes in Europe - running up and down on one of the hottest days this summer was tough.
It was a great team bonding experience with everyone giving 100%! A great work ethic and persistence was shown, something that's been seen throughout the campaign. With many of the girls working full time jobs, fitting training into evenings and weekend is a must but this hasn't reflected in the standard of the sessions carried out.
It was evident that the hard work in training is paying off with the performance Wales put in against the USA team on 28th of June.
When arriving at the ground it was clear the USA women had the size advantage and with a higher world ranking the nerves were clear. Wales put in a great team performance and narrowly lost with a 10-7 defeat.
Defence was strong and what we lacked in size we made up for in desire and attitude. It was a performance which highlighted the good and the bad, exactly what was needed for continued World Cup preparation.
Training has now entered a more match specific and skill execution phase which will put us in good stead to compete with the world's best in France.
The mood in camp is good and everyone is nervously anticipating the trip to France, but there is a lot of belief in what the girls can do. With another preparation game against Ireland next weekend the build-up is intense but ideal and the game will lead up nicely into the first game against France in August.
You can keep up to date with Wales' preparations for the Rugby Women's World Cup which is being staged in France next month, by following www.wru.co.uk where second row Jenny Hawkins will keep us regularly updated with her diary.
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