Wales chase Samoa history

By Emily Dunn ,

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READY AND RARING: Shaun Edwards and Captain Jamie Roberts at Sheraton Samoa Aggie Grey's Hotel talking up their chances.

READY AND RARING: Shaun Edwards and Captain Jamie Roberts at Sheraton Samoa Aggie Grey's Hotel talking up their chances. (Photo: Emily Dunn )

Wales are raring and ready to go ahead of tonight’s clash at Apia Park.

Captain Jamie Roberts told the Samoa Observer his men are as prepared as they can be and now it’s just a matter of getting out there and giving it their best.

Wales has made seven changes to the team that beat Tonga last week, as they chase their first win on Samoan soil.

Roberts is confident they can do the job against the home team. He is excited to play with a fresh team full of uncapped players but emphasises the role of the entire squad. 

“We are going to win and lose games as a 31, and those who have not been selected will put in the hard work in for those who are,” he said.

Having lost four players to the Lions tour, Welsh management have been forced into making several changes. 

A few surprises in the line-up came with the exclusion of both Keelan Giles and Scott Williams.

Defense coach Shaun Edwards explained these choices bluntly, stating that he picked the best players at the time. 

“Keelan Giles wasn’t picked because we thought Cory Allen played better in North Wales.”

Edwards anticipates a tough match. 

“We knew that Tonga would be a challenge but really at the back of our minds this is the biggest game, because Samoa are on home territory and I know Samoa don’t play at home very often.” 

Edwards knows it will be a trial facing the experienced Manu Samoa, led by David Lemi, who he believes is “a real catalyst for the Samoan team. 

“I think he’s a guy the rest of the players look up to him and he brings the out the best in the players around him. So we are in for a challenge.” 

The fact that Wales has never beaten Samoa in Apia, has added pressure to an already daunting task. 

“We are coming to Samoa and we have never won here so we are going in with an underdog mentality,” says the Coach, while Jamie Roberts sees this as an opportunity to make history. 

“All the lads feel it’s a huge privilege to be here, bearing in mind the last tour here for Wales was in 1994, so it has 23 years since Wales has been here, so it’s a huge honour. 

“Wales have never won here so that’s going to be made clear to us, and we have a chance to make history on Friday night, and all the lads are excited for it.”

Wales will unite as a team and believe harnessing this strength will give them the best chance in the coming test match, but they are agrees, Manu Samoa will be their biggest challenge yet!

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