Planet Rugby



Gatland's challenge to Allen

15th November 2013 07:09


cory allen wales

Opportunity: Cory Allen

Wales boss Warren Gatland is looking for uncapped centre Cory Allen to impress in the absence of Jonathan Davies.

Allen has starred in the IRB World Sevens series for Wales and now gets his chance at senior level against Argentina in Cardiff on Saturday.

The 20-year-old has been tipped for success by his club Cardiff Blues and now Gatland wants to create greater strength in depth in midfield.

"We are giving Cory a chance. He is big, he's rangy and he goes in with an opportunity to impress," said Gatland.

"Sometimes you have to be physical, carry the ball and run hard, other times you are looking for players to create space and get passes away and put people into holes. That is what Cory's challenge is for the weekend.

"With Jonathan being injured, we are looking for some cover in the centres. It is a chance for a young guy to develop at centre and get some strength in depth there."

Reflecting on last weekend's 24-15 loss to South Africa, Gatland called for his team to show a greater clinical edge after letting chances slip away against the Springboks.

"We've had a hit-out now, and we need to improve from last weekend, finishing off the chances we create," added Gatland.

"When Jonathan Davies made a break and went through (last Saturday), if you look at the lines of support they were not positive enough. The top teams finish it off when they make a break because their support lines are so positive and they get on the inside of the pass.

"We are working on the fine margins now to try to get this team to that top level. Those little one per-centers are now a huge priority for us."

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