Edwards driven by 2011 heartache

Date published: July 31 2015

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Wales assistant coach Shaun Edwards has revealed that he is still bitter about Sam Warburton's red card decision against France in RWC 2011.

Warburton was sent off by Alain Rolland in the World Cup semi-final after the flanker lifted France wing Vincent Clerc above the horizontal at Eden Park.

And that call from the Irish match official still rankles with Edwards four years on, which is driving him to help his side go at least one better in 2015's event.

"If I'm honest, I still have got bitterness from the last World Cup," he told Sky Sports News HQ.

"You don't get many chances at World Cups and a quite controversial refereeing decision – which, at the moment, is quite regularly given as a yellow card – took our dream away from us.

"I am just very thankful of having another crack at a World Cup because, to be honest, we are all still a little bit bitter from the last one."

Wales have been drawn alongside England, Australia, Fiji and Uruguay in a tough pool but Edwards is confident the work they have done in Switzerland and Qatar gives them the best possible chance of progression to the knockout stages.

"During Warren Gatland's tenure, we have played England eight times. They have won four, we have won four," he added.

"Australia we have struggled to beat, no doubt about that. There have been many, many times we have been beaten in the last few minutes by them.

"That's why we have been working so much on putting the players under so much pressure, so that come the last 10 minutes we are the ones who will be stronger and not Australia."

On their trip to Doha, he added: "It's the most extreme heat I've ever experienced in my life, but also the humidity was quite high, it was around about 80 per cent at times. Add that to 42 degrees celsius.

"The boys had to dig very deep. They pushed their bodies to the limit.

"But they will come back with the attitude that if they can get through that they can get through most things."

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