Warren Gatland realises the importance of Wales following up an impressive victory against Australia by performing well in their remaining Pool D matches.
Wales took control of their Rugby World Cup group by clinging on against the Wallabies and earning a hard-fought 29-25 win.
Gatland’s side are expected to challenge for a first title at this tournament, yet the coach is first focused on ensuring they do not “take anyone lightly” prior to the knockout stages.
Wales face Fiji and then Uruguay in a pair of fixtures they will be expected to win.
“It was a tough game [against Australia] and a victory. It’s confidence boosting hopefully for the next couple of games,” he told a news conference. “We think they’re going to be tough.
“Fiji will be hurting and we saw how well they played against Australia in the first half of that first game. We can’t take anyone lightly in this group.
“It’s important for us that we make sure we prepare in the best way that we possibly can and that we don’t take any team or any performance for granted.
“We have to be as clinical as we possibly can be because that’s what good teams do. They make sure that they are clinical and they are accurate.
“If we are to be considered a good team, we have got to play well in these next two matches.”
Inside the dressing room at Tokyo Stadium, captain Alun Wyn Jones is gifted a special watch to commemorate his 130th cap for Wales. Canmoliaeth ryfeddol ar ddiwrnod bythgofiadwy. #AUSvWAL pic.twitter.com/D4GYYZNvoD
— Welsh Rugby Union (@WelshRugbyUnion) September 29, 2019
Wales were waiting to see how Dan Biggar recovered after a failed head injury assessment, but Gatland was optimistic Liam Williams would be fit after rolling his ankle.
“We’ll need to make sure we recover,” Gatland said. “We’ve got nine or 10 days until our next match.
“We’ll use that in the best way we possibly can to freshen up the guys and make sure we take a little time. It’s nice getting a decent break before our next match against Fiji.”
Meanwhile, opposite number Michael Cheika was not receptive to discussing Wales’ chances when he was asked for an assessment at his own spiky news conference.
“I don’t think that’s really for me to talk about, is it? We’ve played our game against them and move onto the next game,” he said.
“They won, now move onto the next game. It’s not my place to talk about who’s going to win and who’s not.”
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