Warren Gatland says he won’t apologize for pushing his Welsh players to the limit as preparations for the 2023 French league intensify next week. Gatland will get his first chance to manage the entire team just under three months before the start of his Rugby World Cup campaign.
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So far the players have been training in small groups, but all 49 players should arrive at the Glamorgan base next week. In May, Gatland appointed a 54-man provisional training team, however the preparations have since been derailed by several high-profile recalls.
Former captains Alan Wyn Jones and Justin Tipurik announced their departures from Test Rugby, Corey Hill and Rhys Webb withdrew to secure lucrative club contracts, and Rhys Carré was also released after failing to meet performance targets.
This all came after center Joe Hawkins was deemed ineligible for selection following his move to the Exeter Chiefs for the following season. Four players will be removed from the preliminary squad this week ahead of the first full training camp.
Where are they going?
As with previous Rugby World Cup campaigns, Gatland will put its players through two grueling training camps. They return for the third time to the Fish Alpine resort in Switzerland from July 3rd to 17th before heading to the Gloria Sports Arena near Antalya in Turkey from July 23rd to 31st.
In the sweltering conditions, the camps have become infamous for physical and mental stress, but Gatland makes no apologies. A lot is being done for fitness, he says, but the camps aren’t just brutal. This is a chance for us to add details that you simply don’t have time for in a regular campaign.
In the past, we took pride in being able to compete with the best teams in the world because we worked so hard that we could play the full 80 minutes. under the pomp and we can stay in the fight to give ourselves a chance to win. Rugby World Cup fans can buy Wales Vs Australia Tickets from our website.
“Sean Edwards once said, It’s called a test match because that’s exactly what it is. It tests you in every aspect: your determination, your fitness, your skills, your mental toughness. That’s what we’re preparing for, so I won’t apologize for pushing the players to the limit to get the most out of them.”
Who has already impressed?
Scrum halfback Tomos Williams looked to be ahead of his two Scarlets rivals to make the most of Webb’s departure, with Gatland describing him as being in brilliant form. Despite the loss of Hawkins, the head coach believes Wales have real depth in midfield, with the likes of Joe Roberts, Mason Grady and Max Llewelyn impressive in training.
The centers look pretty interesting. Joe Roberts is a little different, the two linebackers are big and physical, they are fast and have good skills, Gatland said. Lok Adam Beard was also lauded after a disappointing Six Nations campaign.
Adam gets a huge amount of criticism from the fans, but he worked his hardest. He looks in good shape and I would like him to shut up a few people, added the head coach. While Gatland was forced to defend how Carré was left out of the team. Fellow Cardiff props Corey Domachowski and Keiron Assiratti pressed their case.
There are some real young people who are very exciting to us. I couldn’t believe Keiron’s level of skill, handling and evasive steps. I told him that he could become a brilliant ten if he lost about 40 kg.
Wales will face two previous Rugby World Cup winners, including defending champions South Africa. We have three good preparation matches physically in terms of England home and away and South Africa and then we prepare for the first leg. It will be hard.
- Saturday 5 August: Wales v England (Principality Stadium)
- Saturday 12 August: England v Wales (Twickenham)
- Saturday 19 August: Wales v South Africa (Principality Stadium)
All teams are allowed to select 33 players for this year’s France Rugby World Cup, two more than in previous tournaments. The increase from 31 in Japan in 2019 is due to player health concerns, while all teams now have a minimum of five days off between games. Because of this, the tournament was extended for a week.
Gatland is expected to name his final squad after meeting Springboks in Cardiff and before the Rugby World Cup deadline. Gatland also hinted at choosing joint captains for the first time, as pool rivals from Australia did with Michael Hooper and James Slipper.
All teams have been nominated a host city for the entire tournament. Wales arrive in Versailles – 12 miles (19km) west of Paris – on Sunday 3 September with an official welcome ceremony that evening. RWC fans can buy Wales Rugby World Cup Tickets from our website.
Wales are one of the few teams that play all four pool matches in different cities. But will travel to each by train with tournament organizers keen to reduce the event’s carbon footprint.
World Cup fixtures
- Sunday 10 September: Wales v Fiji (Stade de Bordeaux, Bordeaux)
- Saturday 16 September: Wales v Portugal (Stade de Nice, Nice)
- Sunday 24 September: Wales v Australia (OL Stadium, Lyon)
- Saturday 7 October: Wales v Georgia (Stade de la Beaujoire, Nantes)
If Wales move forward they will play their quarter-final in Marseille on 14 or 15 October. Wales have only won three of their last 15 games and finished fifth in a contentious Six Nations tournament as internal issues took their toll.
But Gatland, who took over from Wayne Pivak in December, thinks Wales could go unnoticed. There is no doubt that a lot of things happened during the Six Nations, tensions within the squad, the division. I probably didn’t realize at the time the impact it had on the team, he said.
“But Welsh boys love nothing better than being written off with their backs to the wall. Fiji will be a very dangerous first but we are on the good side of the draw if we can reach the quarter-finals. We need to play well to qualify from our group but we have made the Welsh proud of the performances they have shown in this jersey in the past so hopefully we can do it again.”
Ken Owens pulls out of Wales’ Rugby World Cup squad
This year, a prostitute from Wales was the captain of her country’s team at the Six Nations. Ken Owens dropped out of the Wales squad for the Rugby World Cup. The Scarlet prostitute captained Warren Gatland’s team at the Six Nations this year but will not compete in the fourth World Championship later this year.
The 36-year-old has won 91 matches since his debut in 2011, heading to the Lions tour in 2017 and 2021. Gatland’s 54-man practice squad eliminated Owens as the final player. Test Rugby veterans Alan Wyn Jones, Justin Tipurik, and Reece Webb retired. While Reece Carré faced dismissal from the team for failing to meet individual targets. Additionally, Corey Hill accepted an offer in Japan.
The team called up Sam Parry to join their ranks, while injuries led to the release of Owens and Scarlets teammate Josh Macleod, as well as Cardiff Rugby’s Will Davies-King. Gatland expressed his satisfaction with the attitude and dedication displayed by the players during the initial weeks of their mini camps.
“The band worked very hard and we tried several times to test them mentally and physically, as people could see in some of our videos. Unfortunately we have to let go of Ken, Josh and Will due to injury which is really disappointing, but all three hope to be available later this year should we need an injury replacement at any time.”
Preparation and Training for Rugby World Cup
Ken has a niggle in his back and needs time to sort it out. Josh sustained an injury at the club, and despite our initial hopes of coping with it. The assessment of the specialists revealed that managing it was impossible. Will suffered a foot injury during training with us. Which we treated, but unfortunately, he experienced a reinjury, leading to the decision to release him.
We look forward to getting the group back together to spend a few days in Wales before heading to Switzerland. We are already well prepared here in Wales and heading to Fish where we want to benefit from sleeping at altitude and level up our training.
Owen Williams and Alex Cuthbert will not travel to Switzerland for personal reasons. But we are looking for them to participate in our training camp in Turkey. A shin injury, and so he can help his young family at home after the recent birth of his third child.
Owens has previously admitted that he feared his career was coming to an end. After he was out of action for 11 months a couple of years ago due to nerve problems in his back.
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