Wales wing George North is relishing the challenge of matching the likes of Julian Savea and Sonny Bill Williams for both size and skill.
Wales wing George North is relishing the challenge of matching the likes of Julian Savea and Sonny Bill Williams for both size and skill when the All Blacks visit the Millennium Stadium on Saturday.
At 109kg North is handful to contain himself but admitted that the home side face a stiff challenge in trying to contain IRB Player of the Year nominee Savea and offloading genius Williams.
North was particularly complimentary of Savea’s work rate, an example he aims to follow.
“I think the likes of [Alex Cuthbert] and myself – especially me – look at the way wingers play and how they put themselves in the game,” North told NZ Newswire.
“I think [Savea] is a brilliant example of how to impose yourself on a team or even on a game, where people like to see you popping up left, right and centre all the time.
“He’s always there isn’t he? You are watching him to try and work out what to do and also to learn a bit from it as well.”
Wales boast an impressively large back-line but North is well aware that sheer size won’t be enough to stop the All Blacks attack.
“The southern hemisphere teams are very good at winning the aerial battle,” he added.
“They kick a lot and you are aware of what’s coming so you work even harder. There is no bigger challenge than the All Blacks.”
The Welsh defence will be especially wary of Williams, who is set to start at inside centre as he returns to Millennium Stadium for the first time in four years.
“He’s a difficult guy to play against, he’s exceptionally strong in contact and has amazing hands,” commented North.
“The single arm flick has been a pain for everyone and you have to be well aware of his running lines because he’s very strong at carrying from his rugby league days.”