Dubai: With less than two weeks to go until the Emirates Dubai Rugby Sevens, Wales head coach Paul John has challenged his side to become more consistent.
Wales reached the quarter-finals in the first round of the 2013/14 HSBC Sevens World Series on the Gold Coast last month, but they were beaten by South Africa and that frustrated John as his team enjoyed a strong pre-season, which included wins over the South Africans.
Earlier, in the pool rounds, they lost to Canada but beat Fiji, and finished with two narrow losses to South Africa and then Kenya in the Plate semis.
“Overall, it was a better start than last year,” John said ahead of the second round of the World Series here on November 28 to 30. “We reached the quarter-finals, which we didn’t do 12 months ago, but it was frustrating to be so close against South Africa. We were really competitive against them, but looking back, it was definitely a game we could have won.”
Now, John wants the side to take the positives from the Australian trip and work hard on consistency ahead of their pool challenge in Dubai on November 29, which involves matches against Scotland, Spain and Gold Coast runners-up Australia.
“We have to get the standard of performance right in every game of the group. There are no easy games and there is no room for complacency. That’s what we’re working on, making sure we have consistency of performance on a regular basis and at each tournament,” he said.
“The training camp ahead of Dubai won’t be much different to normal, but you can’t take shortcuts in preparation and we won’t be doing that.
“The core group of players will all come back into training and maybe a few extra boys too who will be given the chance to impress. The players performed well in Australia, but we have a good squad and will look at everyone with regards to selection.”