Wales rugby union news
Wales Rugby Team will face mighty New Zealand and Australia
Injured Northampton wing George North is set to miss Wales Autumn International Tests due to a knee injury. Twenty-five-year-old North was injured during Northampton's 57-13 home defeat by Saracens in the European Champions Cup on Sunday and could be out for 6-8 weeks. Ospreys scrum-half Rhys Webb and fellow Osprey Dan Baker, a back-rower, are also doubts after Baker left the fray against Clermont Auvergne on a stretcher and Webb was also forced off. Wales coach Warren Gatland is due to name his squad for the four Autumn Tests next week on Tuesday, 24 October. Gatland’s Wales rugby side face the Australia Wallabies on November 11, Georgia on November 18, the All Blacks on November 25, and the Springboks on December 2.
Great Wales Rugby Union tickets are for sale now securely from LiveRugbyTickets.co.uk! North's injury was confirmed by a scan on Tuesday after he was helped off at Franklin's Gardens last weekend.
After their defeat by Clermont, Ospreys coach Steve Tandy said: "Dan Baker had a bad one. We will have to wait 24 to 48 hours until we will know more." Tandy said the replacement of scrum-half Rhys Webb was more precautionary. "I think Rhys was just cramping up," said Tandy. "He's been banged up after not playing too much recently so it was probably just fatigue. Hopefully it's not too serious."
The exciting Bledisloe Cup battle between New Zealand and Australia is in Round Three in Brisbane this weekend. New Zealand All Blacks coach Steve Hansen has warned his side that the Australian Wallabies are rapidly improving in the series. Both New Zealand and Australia will travel to the United Kingdom next month to go head-to-head with Warren Gatland’s Wales side in the 2017 Under Armour Series. Before the formidable rugby union teams head to the Welsh capital one of them will be named champions of a prestigious domestic southern hemisphere Under Armour cup battle. “They keep deveeloping and they are a confident side. They’ll be disappointed they didn’t knock over the Boks,” said Hansen. “They were two really good Test matches which ended up in a draw – which no one really wants. I’d say they’ll be c oming to Brisbane pretty confident. I don’t think after our Dunedin Test we can afford to be even one or two percent off. Everyone is pretty excited about it and Brisbane is a great place to play.”
Coach Hansen is worriEd about the availability of key rugby player Beauden Barrett, after he suffered a head knock. If he is not fit to compete, Hansen may give a debut and No. 10 jersey to Crusaders playmaker Richie Mo’unga. The Wallabies went past the Springboks to earn a runners-up spot in the Rugby Championship with former Australia Captain Steve Moore at the helm. The 124-times capped hooker will retire from International Rugby at the end of 2017 and play one last season of Super Rugby with the Reds in 2018. Moore of course is looking for a last win in his final game at the Principality Stadium, after already earning 12 wins in his 13 matches against Wales to date. However lock Izack Rodda will be out for Australia in that match and the rest of the year due to shoulder surgery. Expect Rob Simmons to return to the second row joining Adam Coleman in the second row.
Under Armour series schedule
Wales v Australia – Saturday, November 11, 2017
Wales v Georgia – Saturday, November 11, 2017
Wales v New Zealand – Saturday, November 25, 2017
Wales v South Africa – Saturday, December 2, 2017
Meanwhile former Wales and Ospreys outside half Matthew Jones remains a star attraction on and off the pitch. Jones is over 30. On the weekends, as a rugby player Jones is guiding Pontypool on a winning run in the WRU National Championship. Jones’ day job during the week is head coach of rugby at Coleg Gwent where he wore the No. 10 jersey at Pooler. In an upcoming match, his side hosts Cardiff & Vale College, a team that knocked out the reighning champs Coleg Sir Gar, in Round 6 of the Welsh Schools & Colleges League.
Jones talked about his experience at Pontypool.
“I’m really enjoying playing at Pontypoll, but I want to go down the coaching path,” said Jones. “I’ve learned there is no right or wrong way and I’ve taken on board bits from all the coaches I worked with and tried to put that into practice at both Pontypool and Gwent College. It’s nice to give something back on the playing side, but I’m 33 now and my legs aren’t as fast as they used to be. I only wish I’d got into coaching at a much younger age because I think it develops you as a player. At the Cross Keys campus of Gwent College, we are working closely with the community in the Dragons region. Traditionally we have been a great conveyor belt of players for both the Dragons and Wales.”
“Tyler Morgan and Harri Heddie are recent products,” added Jones. Arwel Robson is another player who has gone on to play for Wales Under 20 and the Dragons and is a very good talent. What we are trying to do is give players the freedom to think for themselves and provide them with the tools to compete. We got to the play-offs two years ago and lost to a very good Cymoedd team. What I know is that if this team gives 100%, then we can beat anyone. We are trying to instill the right culture into the players, and we have recruited well this year. The quality of the players is getting better year on year, and there is plenty of evidence that the system is working.” Wales second row Rob Sidoli is in charge at the other academy school in the Dragons region, Newport HS who host Llandovery College in a clash to determine who goes up the table. Each team have only one win this season to date.
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The Australian Wallabies are coming to town in November to go head-to-head in the Autumn Internationals against Wales, England, and Scotland! Do not miss out on a chance to watch the mighty Aussies compete in live action at Twickenham Stadium and Murrayfield Stadium!
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