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Last Updated: Wednesday, 27 August, 2003, 21:31 GMT 22:31 UK
Ruddock gets back to basics
Andy Marinos was used to bash the ball up the midfield
Wales stand-in coach Mike Ruddock hailed a return to core values as the reason for the side getting back to winning ways after their 54-8 victory over Romania at Wrexham.

Senior coach Steve Hansen handed Ruddock the reins for this one-off occasion - and saw the Gwent Dragons coach bring Wales' dismal 11-game, nine-month losing run to an end.

"There were apprehensions after the losing streak so we had to go back to basics," said Ruddock, "We only had limited time together but we stuck to our game plan.

"I told the team not to worry about fantasy rugby, just get territory, get the ball into the corner and hit your targets.

I haven't been involved with the squad all summer and I don't think I have a chance of going to the World Cup
Wales wing Shane Williams
"We sent Andy Marinos, Alix Popham and Mefin Davies up and played a simple, target-orientated game allied to a strong set-piece.

"We needed good, old-fashioned passions and values, and that's what we got."

Ruddock, who was successful in charge of the now-defunct Wales A team, was delighted at the performance of a young, experimental side.

"France only beat this Romania side by 50 points last Friday," said Ruddock, "There are a lot of youngsters who put their hands up tonight.

"Saturday's team (to face Scotland) will have seen this and they will be under pressure to respond with a good performance."

Ruddock refused to be drawn on whether the game had taught any lessons to Hansen for the forthcoming Scotland Test and the World Cup.

"I've resigned already - I've got no idea how Steve will approach Saturday's game!" he joked.

"It's over to him, but the youngsters have given him a tough job on selection."

Shane Williams
Williams does not expect to make the World up squad
Out of reckoning

One man who does not expect to make the senior squad for the World Cup is Shane Williams.

The Ospreys wing thrilled the Racecourse crowd on his return to the international fold with a two-try display, but he does not feel he will come into the reckoning for Australia.

"I haven't been involved with the squad all summer and I don't think I have a chance of going," said Williams.

"I knew that before playing in Wrexham and I just had to put it out of my mind.

"Paul James and Nathan Brew played well, they'll be pushing for inclusion in the World Cup squad.

"But for me the Romania match was just another cap and a few more tries.

"I went out to give it my all, because as far as I'm concerned I've been away too long."




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