Wales set the bar high

Mon, 31 Dec 2012 07:40
Large wales 7s celebrate Large wales 7s v sa Large wales 7s v nz 630

Coach Paul John is hoping the building blocks his side have put in place for the IRB Sevens World Series will reinforce Wales' hopes.

Head coach Paul John is hoping the building blocks his side have put in place for the IRB Sevens World Series after three completed rounds will reinforce Wales' hopes for the next two rounds when the circuit reconvenes for the New Zealand leg in February.

Wales secured two top-five finishes in the most recent rounds held in Dubai and Port Elizabeth in South Africa, but as the Sevens jamboree heads towards Wellington and Las Vegas for the opening rounds in 2013, John insists his side will not be resting on their laurels and is demanding his squad continues to build on the solid foundations they have already built.

En route to picking up the Plate final silverware in both Dubai and Port Elizabeth, Wales defeated the mighty Fijians twice and gave series leaders New Zealand a major scare before falling just short in the Airline Dubai Sevens.

New Zealand go into the New Year as leaders in the overall IRB World Series standings with 60 points while Wales are in eighth position with 31 points.

However, due to the nature of the season which has seen a number of upsets in the three rounds to date, Argentina, Kenya, Samoa, South Africa, Fiji and France are all easily within touching distance of John's side.

In past seasons Wales have been guilty of letting promising positions against the big boys pass them by but John is hoping his side have turned a corner in that respect.

"It's all about consistency," he said. "It's been a problem in the past - when we lost a quarter-final we struggled in the two games afterwards but we had a really positive response from everyone - senior players Rhys Shellard, Lee Williams, Richie Pugh, Adam Thomas and Rhys Jones were all excellent. All those boys who have got experience led from the front and kept the group together - it was an example of what we can do - to beat Fiji twice in consecutive week's shows consistency.

"We've got a tough group coming up in New Zealand (Samoa, Canada and South Africa) and that's the thing – training has got to be hard to prepare the boys for what's coming up in Wellington. The attitude of the boys was outstanding in Dubai and South Africa. They worked hard as a group, communication on the field and training was much better and they got the results on the field they deserved.

"We were pleased to pick up two top five finishes on the trot as it was a big step up from the first tournament in the Gold Coast where we didn't make the main knockout stages and lost to Spain in the Bowl semi-final," added John.

"We've hit a good level over the last two tournaments – our aim has got to be to try and maintain that level as it always is. Consistency has proven to be very difficult in what is a hugely competitive environment.

"To play in front of 40,000 crowds against international opposition can only be good for the players' development – it is really testing and accelerating their development. Our aim is to keep going at the level we are at the moment and keep getting as many points as we can and build towards the World Cup in Russia in June."

There are currently no matches being played
FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Fri, 20 October 2017
Scarlets v Bath 18h45 Parc y Scarlets
Sat, 21 October 2017
Australia v New Zealand 09h00 Brisbane
Glasgow Warriors v Leinster 12h00 Scotstoun
Sharks v Blue Bulls 12h30 Durban
Treviso v Toulon 14h15 Stadio Comunale di Monigo
Western Province v Golden Lions 15h00 Cape Town
Clermont Auvergne v Northampton Saints 15h15 Stade Marcel-Michelin
Leicester Tigers v Castres 16h30 Welford Road
Munster v Racing Metro 16h30 Thomond Park
Saracens v Ospreys 18h45 Allianz Park
Sun, 22 October 2017
Montpellier v Exeter Chiefs 12h00 Altrad Stadium
La Rochelle v Ulster 14h15 Paris
Wasps v Harlequins 16h30 Ricoh Arena
SEVENS
MORE LOGS
Pool 0
Team P W D L Pts
Spain Sevens 0 0 0 0 20
Korea Sevens 0 0 0 0 0
Pool 00
Team P W D L Pts
Chile 0 0 0 1 10
Papua New Guinea 0 1 0 0 1
Pool 19
Team P W D L Pts
England Sevens 0 0 0 0 19
Pool 20
Team P W D L Pts
Uganda Sevens 0 0 0 0 2
Pool A
Team P W D L Pts
Fiji Sevens 0 0 0 0 0
Scotland Sevens 0 0 0 0 0
Canada Sevens 0 0 0 0 0
Samoa Sevens 0 0 0 0 0
Pool B
Team P W D L Pts
New Zealand Sevens 0 0 0 0 0
Australia Sevens 0 0 0 0 0
France Sevens 0 0 0 0 0
Pool C
Team P W D L Pts
United States Sevens 0 0 0 0 0
Argentina Sevens 0 0 0 0 0
Japan Sevens 0 0 0 0 0
Pool D
Team P W D L Pts
South Africa Sevens 0 0 0 0 0
Kenya Sevens 0 0 0 0 0
Russia Sevens 0 0 0 0 0
Pool
Team P W D L Pts
Wales Sevens
Hong Kong