Colours: Red and white
Honours: Six Nations Grand Slam (2005 and 2008), Five Nations Grand Slam (1911, 1950, 1952, 1971, 1976 & 1978), Four Nations Grand Slam (1908, 1909), Six Nations winners (Twice), Five Nations Winners (15 outright, eight shared), Four Nations winners (seven outright, three shared)
Coach: Warren Gatland has a reputation for success, and his CV proves it, having masterminded a Six Nations title win plus Heineken Cup glory and three English Premiership titles while at Wasps and the Air New Zealand Cup with Waikato during his coaching career. However, the knives are out for Gatland, who agreed a new WRU contract last year that will run until after the 2015 World Cup, after a poor November Test series stretched Wales' winless streak to seven games. There is no doubting his initial impact in the role, but can he take a talented, if paper thin, squad to the next level?
Captain: Ryan Jones was initially installed as captain by Warren Gatland but the big number eight has been forced to make way for hooker Matthew Rees, who impressed when handed the responsibility ahead of Jones in November last year, and led from the front with some strong displays. However, his line-out throwing remains a concern.
Player to watch: Ospreys centre James Hook is firmly established as one of European rugby's most creative players, with the ability to unlock most defences. Hook, whether he plays fly-half, centre or full-back, is an attacking threat Wales will utilise in the upcoming Six Nations.
Profile: One of the proudest of rugby nations, Wales won three Grand Slams in the 1970s and add two more in the 'noughties'.
Third place in the inaugural World Cup in 1987 and the Five Nations title in 1988 was shortly followed by one of the worst periods in the history of the game, as defections to rugby league and internal struggles decimated the national side.
A Five Nations whitewash followed in 1990 and in 1991 Wales were dumped out of the World Cup in the pool stages.
However, with the appointment of New Zealander Graham Henry in November 1998 things improved, a run of 10 consecutive Test wins, including one over South Africa and a famous win over England, saw him heralded as the 'Great Redeemer'.
As host nation of 1999 World Cup, Wales reached the quarter-finals before losing to eventual champions Australia 24-9 and emerged from the inaugural Six Nations tournament with some credit, recording victories over Ireland, Scotland and Italy.
However, over the following two years Wales struggled to make any further progress and defeats to the likes of Argentina and Ireland in 2001/02 led to Henry's resignation in February 2002, with Steve Hansen replacing him.
Hansen inherited a team in flux but his confidence that a new-look side was evolving at the right pace suffered a blow when a second-string England selection put 40 points on Wales prior to the 2003 World Cup. The talent, as always, was there but the execution appeared worryingly amiss.
The matches against New Zealand and England at the 2003 RWC were hailed as turning points. Wales lost both, but ran in 37 points against the ABs and outscored England by three tries to one, both times playing a thrilling 'do-or-die' brand of rugby.
After that, there were several more near misses, including a heartbreaking one-point defeat to the All Blacks in Cardiff, before victory over England in 2005 sparked one of the most thrilling Grand Slams of the post-1970s era.
Under the pressure of multiple injuries, Wales stuttered at the end of 2005, but a first victory over Australia in 18 years with an under-strength team will have quelled fears of the 2005 Six Nations being a flash in the pan. In fact that Grand Slam was followed by a second, in 2008, as well as another victory over Australia.
Fast forward to now and Wales, quite simply, have forgotten how to win.
Not since the final game of last season's Six Nations tournament when they predictably toppled Italy in Cardiff have Gatland's men finished on the right side of the ledger. It is a run of seven Tests - six defeats and a shambolic draw against Fiji - that has cranked up the heat on Gatland and his players.
Wales have to go all the way back to Steve Hansen's coaching reign for a spell of such prolonged misery, losing 10 successive Tests between November 2002 and August 2003.