Warren Gatland will need to make some crucial choices over the next days and weeks. Welsh RWC players preparations will soon be in full flow with the first group of players arriving in camp this week. Rugby World Cup 2023 fans can buy Wales Rugby World Cup Tickets from our website.
The 52-player extended squad that Warren Gatland now has is expected to be reduced before they leave for their first international training camp in Switzerland in early July.
Before the New Zealander selects the 33 players he will take to the Rugby World Cup 2023 in France, the roster will be further reduced before they travel to Turkey and compete in three exhibition matches against South Africa and England (twice). These are the difficult choices Gatland will have to make in the upcoming weeks and months.
Welsh RWC players may be one of their strongest positions since they have plenty of offensive fire powers. Liam Williams, Louis Rees-Zammit, and Josh Adams may damage opponents if Wales’ pack can secure front football and, at the least, achieve parity in the contact area.
But because he is limited to 33 players, he could have to give up one of the back three to make sure that everything else is covered. Josh Adams, Liam Williams, and Louis-Rees-Zammit are essentially locked in, but there are still open spots.
The seasoned Alex Cuthbert and Dragons speedster Rio Dyer are expected to compete head-to-head for one position, while Leigh Halfpenny, who is always dependable, is also in the running.
In the event of injury, Gatland may choose to employ Gareth Anscombe as a temporary full-back instead of Halfpenny despite the latter’s goal-kicking ability. Mason Grady and George North can both cover the wings. For Cai Evans and Tom Rogers, the World Cup is perhaps coming up too soon.
The Welsh RWC players management will undoubtedly be concerned with the midfield. One would quickly see that one of the primary factors in Wales’ success throughout the 2011, 2015, and 2019 World Cups was the knowledge and unity of its centres.
In 2011 and 2015, Wales had a seasoned duo in Jamie Roberts and Jonathan Davies who had a telepathic understanding of one another and had played a lot of test rugby. A similar thing happened in 2019 when Davies was paired with Hadleigh Parkes, a former Scarlets colleague.
Gatland has been given a break in this way since Wayne Pivac. His predecessor, never really decided on a first-choice centre pairing. Due to Joe Hawkins’ ineligibility under the 25 cap regulation, Gatland must make some difficult decisions.
Johnny Williams is one player who hasn’t played under Gatland yet because of an injury. The Scarlets star is a perfect fit for the style of centre Gatland has always chosen. He has excellent footwork and consistently crosses the gain line. He also has a turn of speed and is an underappreciated distributor.
Although George North hasn’t been at his best lately, his class and experience prevent him from being overlooked. Mason Grady, Joe Roberts, Keiran Williams, and Max Llewellyn also have a lot of promise. The issue is that there aren’t as many surefire picks as there were in 2019 when Gatland employed three centres and North on the flank.
In addition to Nick Tompkins, a reliable performer, George North will very definitely be replaced. Grady will have an advantage over Llewellyn, Roberts, and Ospreys centre Williams because of his test-level experience. Rugby World Cup fans can buy Wales Vs Georgia Tickets from our website.
Starting with those who are as near to a certain option as possible. Dan Biggar fits into this category because Welsh RWC players need his expertise. Leadership, ability to control games, and knack for scoring goals.
Sam Costelow, a playmaker for the Scarlets, will undoubtedly play for the Wales Rugby World Cup one day, but he may have to wait until after the World Cup. Gatland will likely have to choose between the returning Owen Williams and Gareth Anscombe, who was his first pick before the 2019 tournament before suffering a devastating ACL injury that ended his hopes.
The scrum-half is a fascinating technique. Rhys Webb finished the Six Nations as the top pick, but Tomos Williams has an advantage in selection since he stands out from the other number nines. Gareth Davies has been giving the Scarlets some of his finest Rugby World Cup in years over the past few months.
The 32-year-old’s experience and game-changing skills might be a huge benefit for the Wales Rugby World Cup squad, but many in the sport feel that his regional teammate Kieran Hardy’s faster service should gain him the nod. Whatever your position, you’ll probably have to choose between Davies and Hardy from The Scarlets.
While Gatland has already noted the need for greater movement and ball handlers in his front five. Welsh RWC players scrum struggled throughout the Six Nations and was well outplayed by France in Paris. He brought four props in 2019 and will most likely bring the same amount to France in the autumn.
The uncapped pair of Kemsley Mathias and Corey Domachowski will eventually receive numerous caps, but this World Cup could come too soon for them. This season, Nicky Smith has been among the best props in European rugby. With the Ospreys player’s destructive scrummaging a major bonus.
With his excellent scrummaging being a key component. Gareth Thomas has been one of the success stories of the last few seasons. Rhys Carre doesn’t have the same tight-area strength as the other two, but he is a dynamic carrier in the park and matches Gatland’s preferred prop type.
Smith or Thomas may lose out as a result of this. Henry Thomas, a former England international who plays for Montpellier, was chosen, which has complicated things for tighthead. Gatland is correct to closely examine the seasoned Thomas because tighthead is undoubtedly the weakest position on the team.
Given that he has admirably anchored the Wales RWC 2023 squad scrum for the previous eight years. Tomas Francis would seem to be the front-runner, but he hasn’t been at his best lately. Although Dillon Lewis is not a very skilled scrummager. His effort in the park speaks for itself and he has become better.
Thomas might exert significant pressure on Francis. It would be a major decision if Gatland sent Will Davies-King or Kieron Assiratti to France. Hooker is much easier to understand. Dewi Lake and Ken Owens are essentially locked, but Gatland will have to pick between Ryan Elias and Elliot Dee.
Although many people were surprised by Alun Wyn Jones’ sudden retirement, Gatland still has plenty of choices at lock. Adam Beard is a favourite of the New Zealander, while Cory Hill’s comeback is appropriate considering how well he performed for Welsh RWC players in the last years of the first Gatland period.
Will Rowlands is also a lock, therefore there will probably be competition for one slot between Dafydd Jenkins, Christ Tshiunza, Ben Carter, and Rhys Davies. Tshiunza has the benefit of being able to play lock, blindside, and openside. But with Hill’s return, that advantage is diminished because the former Cardiff player can now also cover the back row.
Over the past year, Carter’s development has stagnated. And you can see he still has a lot of work to do. The powerful Ospreys player Davies has excelled at the regional level and undoubtedly possesses the physicality to compete at the test level but Jenkins is the clear front-runner in this situation since Gatland spent so much time working with him during the Six Nations.
The hardest position to choose from is the back row, which is comparable to the midfield. With the recent retirements of Josh Navidi and Justin Tipuric. As well as Ross Moriarty’s inability to play, Welsh RWC players have lost a substantial amount of experience.
Since Taulupe Faletau is named as the starting player on the roster. There is no need to argue about who wears jersey number eight. Gatland selected six loose forwards four years ago, which significantly favours players who can play throughout the back row.
Josh Macleod and Taine Basham can each play the six, seven, and eight positions, so it makes sense that they would be vying for the same position. Tommy Reffell of the Leicester Tigers and Jac Morgan of the Ospreys are both expected to go, although Gatland is a huge supporter of Aaron Wainwright, who can play the blindside and No. 8.
Veteran blindside Dan Lydiate cannot be disregarded either, despite his advanced age. Gatland will experience several restless nights before deciding on his final 33.