Wales: Neil Jenkins demands side ‘turn up and front up’ against Wallabies after shock defeat to Georgia

Adam Kyriacou
Neil Jenkins

Wales assistant coach Neil Jenkins says “there is no hiding place” for his side against Australia as they look to hit back from a shock defeat to Georgia.

One week after they went down to a 13-10 loss to the Lelos, the Welsh will be determined to respond in their final Autumn Nations Series match of this month.

The result has piled even more pressure on head coach Wayne Pivac, who has won just 13 of his 33 Tests in charge, as Wales fall down the World Rugby rankings.

But even with a solid recent record against the Wallabies in their corner, Jenkins admits that keeping positive after the loss to Georgia has been difficult to do.

Dark day for Welsh rugby

“It’s tough – I am not going to lie,” he said.

“It is incredibly disappointing, which is probably putting it lightly. It’s one of the darkest days, but you have got to go again.

“We’ve got another Test match on Saturday, and it is important that we turn up and front up.

“We don’t want to be in that position. We don’t want Wayne in that position. None of us want to be in that position.

“It is important that collectively – players, staff, everyone – come together quickly, which I think we’ve done, and turn up on Saturday.

“There is no hiding place. We need to be ready to go on Saturday.

“It is horrific, absolutely horrific. I am a passionate Welshman. I am desperate for Wales to do well.

“It could be tiddlywinks, I want Wales to win and be successful. Whether I’m involved in that or not is irrelevant to me, I want Wales to be successful.

“I want to win Test matches. That is what I am here for, to be successful and win. I am desperate to win – starting on Saturday.”

Due to this week’s game against Australia falling outside of World Rugby’s end-of-year window, Wales will be without Louis Rees-Zammit and others in Cardiff.

Cushioning those absences somewhat is the injury list the Wallabies are battling with, as Jenkins demands a response from his troops after this latest setback.

Need to build momentum

Jenkins added: “You have got to look at yourself, it doesn’t matter whether you are playing, coaching, whatever part of the staff you are involved in, and ask if you did enough to win a Test match.

“You don’t want to be in that position (Italy defeat) again, do you? That was March and this is November, and we are back in the same position again.

“We fronted up in South Africa during the summer, and we fronted up after New Zealand (by beating Argentina).

“We don’t want to keep fronting up because of a poor display or a poor result. You want to be building some momentum.

“At this level, you have to be consistent. It is a massive part of Test match rugby.

“You need that confidence of winning and getting over the line. How you win is irrelevant.

“You don’t tend to see how well a team plays when you look back on history, but how often they won and whether they got a Grand Slam or a World Cup.

“It is often about the end result and how you get there.”

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