Coombs hungry to face Tonga

Date published: November 19 2013

Forced to wait on the sidelines over the last two weeks, Dragons lock Andrew Coombs is eager to get a chance for Wales against Tonga.

Forced to wait on the sidelines over the last two weeks, Dragons lock Andrew Coombs is eager to get a chance for Wales against Tonga.

Wales have selected Bradley Davies alongside Alun Wyn Jones in the second row against South Africa and Argentina, with Luke Charteris on the bench.

With head coach Warren Gatland expected to make changes however for Friday's Test before facing Australia the following week, Coombs is hoping for an opportunity.

“It's been a long three weeks and it has been pretty difficult to sit there and watch the lads go out and play,” Coombs told WalesOnline.

“But it's something I have had to do and the boys have played pretty well.

“I always knew that it would be tough competition against Ian Evans, Alun Wyn Jones, Bradley Davies and Luke Charteris.

“I've been patient and hopefully I'll get my chance against Tonga and show what I can do.

“It's a big chance for everyone to put their hand up and stake a claim for the Australia game. The boys are focused and know what is expected of us.

“The players that are selected have a huge duty to keep the good work going from Argentina.

“It's hugely important that we get three wins from this autumn series and push on for the Six Nations.”

Commenting on Tonga's discipline, after Sona Taumalolo was sent off for punching France's Yoann Maestri last weekend and Taniela Moa was sin-binned for a reckless elbow, Coombs has called for Wales to stay composed.

“They are going to be very physical and it's important we keep our discipline,” added Coombs.

“Last weekend a Tongan (Taumalolo) threw a punch and the French reacted (with Yoann Maestri also dismissed), it's important we keep our cool. If that's the sort of game they want to play then we have to let them and leave the referee to deal with it.

“Discipline is always key at international level and we have to stick to playing our game, we can't change for Tonga.

“They are going to be looking to come at us and hit us hard, so you look to use your footwork, evade them, carry low and keep hold of the ball.”

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