Wales ready to ‘leave everything out there’ against the Black Ferns

GettyImages 1433721759

Coach Ioan Cunningham said, "I think we can say with confidence from our first match against the Black Ferns in the pool stages that we troubled them.

"What an opportunity. We've just got to leave everything out there. No regrets. Just go for it. Things can happen."

Being able to sustain their effort for 80 minutes against a team like the Black Ferns, who run the ball consistently, would be a challenge, and that meant using the 23 players and making changes at the right time to maintain energy levels on the field.

"I think you'll find 10-15 per cent extra with the quarterfinal. You dig deep. That's what we've challenged the girls with this week – to go as deep as they can, and hunt and hustle everything."

With rain forecast and humid conditions, Cunningham said he thought Wales would enjoy that.

"I think if it does rain then it might help more towards a set-piece game where there might be a few more errors from a knock-on or handling inability. Plus, maybe the kicking game comes in a bit more. We will adjust and see what it's like on the day."

Cunningham felt Wales had absorbed lessons from the tournament, something he hoped would be seen in their effort on Saturday.

"It's been an unbelievable tournament. An unbelievable experience for the group. We thoroughly enjoyed it. It's been a challenge. We've learned loads about ourselves and on our team. We reflect on it as possibly a tournament where we've missed some opportunities, and that's something that we've got to fix."

Halfback Keira Bevan, who is making her first start, said: "It's going to be a different challenge. Two out of the three games we've played in the pool have been fairly tight.

"We want to start strong against the Black Ferns. In the first 20 minutes of our game against them in the pool stages, we did that. And once they got the first points on the board, it was like opening the floodgates a little bit.

"For us, it's just about winning each moment and staying in the present. Hopefully, we can compete in areas like the set piece.


View all