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Wales' World Cup camp a happy place, says Dan Biggar

Published 09/10/2015

Fly-half Dan Biggar wants Wales to keep the emphasis on enjoyment as they head towards the World Cup quarter-finals
Fly-half Dan Biggar wants Wales to keep the emphasis on enjoyment as they head towards the World Cup quarter-finals

Dan Biggar says Wales will continue to enjoy their World Cup journey after emerging in style from the tournament's so-called pool of death.

Unbeaten Wales go into Saturday's Pool A decider against Australia at Twickenham knowing that a first victory over the Wallabies since 2008 would secure a quarter-final appointment with Scotland or Japan.

If they lose, then twice world champions South Africa await, but such is Wales' buoyant mood and spirit in the camp that they have no intention of allowing the adventure to end any time soon.

"Why shouldn't we be enjoying it?" said Biggar, whose masterful performance and 23-point haul against England two weeks ago kick-started Wales' campaign.

"We have qualified from an extremely tough pool. The players have got every right to enjoy and feel fairly good about themselves. We are at the start of hopefully a successful month.

"Playing England at Twickenham nobody gave us a prayer, and everyone is talking up the Wallabies this week, and quite rightly so as they are an outstanding team.

"I think as a group we are comfortable together. We have been together a long time, and it's a happy place."

Biggar's confidence and tactical awareness has proved pivotal to Wales enjoying a 100 per cent record in the tournament, yet away from rugby he admits it is a different story.

"I think probably off the field I am the least confident person there is," added the Ospreys playmaker.

"I don't really enjoy the limelight at all in terms of what comes with it. When I am on the field it is when I am most comfortable and almost when I can relax a bit more in terms of knowing what I'm doing.

"Off the field I don't like all the publicity and everything that goes with doing well, but I know it is part and parcel of it.

" The frustration from some friends and family of mine is sometimes rugby is all they want to talk about.

"But I guess if you are an accountant, you don't want to talk about numbers and figures when you go home each evening. It's great that we can go home and relax and put anything other than rugby on and forget about rugby just for those days. It's important to come in fresh to go."

Wales have suffered 10 successive defeats against Australia - seven of those losses were by five points or less - while the Wallabies' Twickenham destruction of England six days ago stands out as currently World Cup 2015's outstanding performance.

"Their backs are looking sharp, and they played some really good rugby against England, so it is going to take a heck of a defensive effort from us," Biggar said.

"But we went to Twickenham and beat England in their own World Cup, so we have got to go in there with plenty of confidence and back ourselves to come out on top, although we are fully aware how difficult it is to beat the Wallabies.

"We go into this weekend with a fraction of pressure off us - or as little pressure off as you are going to get in an international World Cup rugby match - but knowing that we have qualified no matter what has put a relaxed mood in the camp.

"We can chance our arm once or twice a little bit, but our same structure will remain to be physical, do our basics well, try and get over the gain-line and play some rugby.

"Ourselves and Australia would feel a lot more comfortable and confident going into a quarter-final on the back of winning every pool match, rather than off the back of a defeat.

"It's not the end of the world, but it's about continuity, confidence and having the squad together and all being on a high. It has been important to keep the confidence, and a winning team is generally a happy team.

"We have had so many injuries, we have had so much publicity about that, and it has brought us all together and we are just worried about ourselves and thinking whoever we play - Scotland, Japan or South Africa - it's going to be a heck of a Test match, but one which we are going to relish."

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