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Howley not dwelling on 2007 loss

Rob Howley insists that Wales are looking forward - not back - when they renew World Cup acquaintances with Fiji on Sunday.

Fiji sent Wales packing from the 2007 tournament in France, winning what was a straight knockout game with a quarter-final place as its prize. Four years on and Wales find themselves occupying pole position - their place in the last eight will effectively be confirmed if Samoa fail to collect a point against world champions South Africa on Friday.

Asked how relevant 2007 might be towards Sunday's clash, assistant coach Howley said: "No relevance."

And Howley is adamant that Wales will not get ahead of themselves by contemplating a probable World Cup quarter-final against Ireland before they finish Pool D business.

The likely Wellington showdown on Saturday week has been a strong possibility ever since Ireland blew open the draw's top half by beating Australia 12 days ago.

"We were hugely disappointed with our result against South Africa, but we showed great resilience in beating Samoa," he added.

"And we are quietly confident where we are at the moment. I think it's dangerous to look ahead. Any international rugby game is very difficult to win.

"It's about concentrating on our game and controlling your own destiny.

"In terms of the big picture, we will be quite strong on Sunday afternoon. It's just about not getting ahead of yourself.

"Sunday is our next game. If it's a good game, then we can look ahead to the quarter-finals."


From Belfast Telegraph