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Wales wary of Samoa's threat

Wales will go into Sunday's appointment with Samoa in Hamilton well aware of their dismal World Cup history against the South Sea Islanders.

Samoa claimed victories over Wales during both the 1991 and 1999 tournaments, each time in Cardiff. And although fly-half Stephen Jones is the sole 2011 squad survivor from events 12 years ago, it serves as a reminder of how dangerous a team Samoa can be.

"We haven't got the best of histories against Samoa in the World Cup, which is something we are looking to eradicate," Wales hooker Huw Bennett said.

"It's a massive game for us. They did really well against Australia earlier in the summer, so they are running with some good form. They bring a lot of passion, a lot of physicality and some flair as well.

"You haven't got to be a rocket scientist to know what Samoa are going to come at you with."

Wales coach Warren Gatland will name his team for the Pool D showdown on Friday, with few, if any, changes expected following last weekend's agonising 17-16 loss to world champions South Africa.

But Jones and prop Gethin Jenkins, who have both been sidelined by calf muscle injuries, could feature in the matchday 22.

Bennett added: "It was obviously a bitter pill to swallow not gaining the win (against South Africa), but we can't mope around about the loss.

"You look back on it and it does bring back thoughts of 'if only'. But you have got to make it happen and at the end of the day we lost. We have got ourselves in a situation where we neeed to win all our games. We've put it to bed now and we are fully concentrated on our task against Samoa."

Huw Bennett Wales


From Belfast Telegraph