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Sunday, 10 November, 2002, 13:03 GMT
Hansen happy at last
Wales centre Jamie Robinson
Jamie Robinson impressed as a replacement
Wales coach Steve Hansen declared himself to be "very happy" after his side produced an impressive 58-14 victory over Fiji in Cardiff on Saturday.

Hansen made six changes to the side that defeated Romania at Wrexham last week.

The New Zealander was rewarded with a seven-try display that puts the Welsh in good heart for forthcoming Tests against Canada and New Zealand on the next two weekends.


We were just outclassed by a top side
Fiji coach Mac McCallion

"I'm very happy with the score," said Hansen. "It's something that we needed and something we wanted. It's a real confidence-booster.

"We are in a good position at the moment and we have people in form.

"There is a bit of competition starting for places and that is producing better performances."

Hansen went into the four autumn internationals intent on having a look at as many members of his squad as possible and made six changes from last week'd starting XV.

"We will stick to the plan," Hansen added. "We have to create something bigger and we need to grow as a squad and a team.

"We need to come out of the four matches with some serious questions answered and we are starting to do that.

"It's probably the best I've seen us defend. Fiji asked a lot of questions and we all responded to a man."

The only disappointment for Hansen was the 10th-minute ankle injury suffered by Saracens centre Tom Shanklin.

The full extent of the damage has not yet been diagnosed but Shanklin will almost certainly miss next Saturday's Millennium Stadium clash with Canada.

Wales debutant flanker Dafydd Jones
Hansen praised Dafydd Jones' debut performance

However, Cardiff outside centre Jamie Robinson grabbed his opportunity with both hands and was at the heart of Wales' best attacking play.

Dafydd Jones had an impressive debut, creating Wales' third try for skipper Colin Charvis, Hansen saying that the young Llanelli flanker had "done himself proud".

The Millennium Stadium was only half full but Hansen said: "There's nothing we can do about it but we gave the fans who did come a treat."

The Kiwi declined to comment on the All Blacks defeat against England at Twickenham, or his team's prospects when they face New Zealand in the last of their autumn games.

Next up are Canada, who are in the same World Cup group as Wales.

"They are a side that has performed well in the World Cup qualifiers and a team to respect," Hansen said.

"They beat Scotland in the summer so that will be another tough opponent."

Fiji coach Mac McCallion rued the indiscipline which put his side on the way to defeat, as fly-half Stephen Jones landed the five early penalty opportunities presented to him.

"Fijians being Fijians, once they got penalised like that they struggled to come back," McCallion said. "We were just outclassed by a top side today."

McCallion, a New Zealander himself, even suggested that the All Blacks could lose if Wales produce a similar performance in two weeks.

"If, on the day, they play as well as they did against us it's possible," McCallion said.

"We got an old-fashioned hiding. Wales played our type of game and beat us at it."

Wales play four Tests against Romania, Fiji, Canada and New Zealand

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