Апреля 24, 2018

Williams and Halfpenny return to face Ireland

22 Февраля 2018, 12:58 | Ruben Stone

Wales boss Gatland targets Ireland's Sexton Murray

Wales boss Gatland targets Ireland's Sexton Murray

Ireland duo Conor Murray and Johnny Sexton have been warned they're the targets for Warren Gatland's Wales side in Saturday's crunch Six Nations clash.

Only New Zealand World Cup victor Graham Henry has overseen more games - 103 - for one country, with Gatland set to pass that mark when Wales tour Argentina this summer.

Ireland will look to keep alive a hunt for a Six Nations Grandslam triumph this weekend - Standing in their way will be Wales at the Aviva Stadium. Although they lost to England, Wales can leapfrog Ireland on the Six Nations table with victory.

Gatland coached Murray and Sexton in the last two British & Irish Lions tours and laid down an early marker to the pair knowing full well the quality they possess.

"Inside and outside Wales he has always had to, for some reason prove himself".

His record against Joe Schmidt is a good one and a year ago he celebrated victory over Ireland in Cardiff.

"I think so we are still in the mix and the bonus-point system has seen us pick up two on the opening weekends".

"We've got to make sure we don't give Ireland an opportunity to kick to the sidelines by giving away penalties and execute their driving lineout, which is pretty effective, and allow Johnny Sexton to keep their scoreboard ticking over".

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"We have some big names coming back into the squad so hopefully they can add a bit of experience. He's a great coach and his work with the Lions put him up there with the best".

"He has been my only coach in worldwide rugby". When we have been in tough situations, he knows how to get that extra couple of per cent out of you.

"He is a very good man manager".

"Who would you say has then?" the reporter offered as a response.

Owens, who made his Test debut under Gatland during the 2011 World Cup and now has 54 caps, also hailed Gatland's adaptability that has helped keep him at the forefront of Test rugby's ever-changing landscape.

"I thought the way Wales played at home against them a year ago was outstanding, the kind of model and benchmark to take to Ireland". I think they've beaten us once in the last five occasions and one was a draw. We know it's a massive, must-win game, in Dublin against a team that are hard to get the ball off.

This will be Gatland's 100th game in charge of Wales, but he played this down.

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