Planet Rugby

Beck calls on Wales to step up

25th November 2013 08:15


Wales v Tonga: Ashley Beck

Rallying cry: Ashley Beck

Wales centre Ashley Beck has called for an increase in quality when the Wallabies come to Cardiff this weekend.

Warren Gatland's side laboured to a 17-7 win over Tonga last Friday, with Beck one of two try scorers, in a match that was widely derided by fans and the media as one of the worst of the year.

Wales have not beaten Australia since November 2008, losing eight consecutive matches since then - including four matches last year by an average of 3.25 points.

The added experience of the Welsh player who helped the British and Irish Lions to victory over Australia earlier this year however is a factor Beck believes will help Wales' chances considerably.

"Australia are a tier one nation and they've just come from playing the All Blacks and South Africa (in The Rugby Championship) so you've got to step it up and the boys know that," Beck told the Western Telegraph.

"And the boys who went out there [with the Lions] know what it takes to beat them so hopefully we can feed that through to the other boys and turn them over this week.

"Australia are a good team, a bit more structured than most. They throw the ball about and are a bit cleverer than most teams. Hopefully, we'll be able to do our jobs and perhaps turn them over.

"I don't know how many times we've played them, but we haven't won in a couple of years. It's been close - out in Australia last year it was a couple of points here and there, and over here a year ago they scored with the last play.

"So it's not as if we're miles away from them. It's just another game. Hopefully, we can go out and turn them over."

Wales are regarded as having a psychological block against SANZAR sides, having not beaten one of Australia, South Africa or New Zealand since that 2008 success over the Wallabies. Their last win over the Springboks was in 1999, whilst they have not beaten the All Blacks since 1953.

"A lucky try cost us against South Africa [two weeks ago in the 24-15 loss]," added Beck.

"Had they not been awarded that, it could have been a different story. We've got to go out and do what we normally do and hopefully we'll get a win.

"I wouldn't say it's a psychological problem. The boys were confident going into the South Africa game, only for the bounce of the ball to go against us at a key time. Hopefully, this coming weekend will be a different kettle of fish and we'll turn Australia over."

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