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Page last updated at 06:36 GMT, Friday, 18 June 2010 07:36 UK

Wales' tails are up for NZ Test - lock Alun Wyn Jones

Venue: Carisbrook, Dunedin Date: Saturday, 19 June Kick-off: 0835 BST
Coverage: Live on BBC Radio Wales MW & online, score updates online, live on Sky Sports 1

Alun Wyn Jones returns at lock
Alun Wyn Jones returns to the Wales starting line-up at lock against the All Blacks

Lock Alun Wyn Jones returns to Wales' starting line-up saying their tails are up ahead of Saturday's first tour Test against New Zealand.

The Osprey came off the bench in the 5 June 34-31 defeat by South Africa, where Wales had led by 13 points.

He said: "We've got our tails up really after the South African performance, losing by three points after being up at one stage 16-3.

"So there's a lot of positives we can take coming down here."

Having started against England and Scotland, Jones was missed Wales' remaining three Six Nations games after suffering a chipped elbow against the Scots.

He returned to fitness and form as he helped the Ospreys end their season on a high by winning the Magners League title with a stunning away win at Leinster.

I'm not going to be backed into any corners about how bad or good the Welsh line-out is. It's been good in the past and it will be good this weekend

Alun Wyn Jones

Cardiff Blues rival Deiniol Jones started alongside rising star Bradley Davies against the Springboks, but British and Irish Lion Jones is back to face the All Blacks, who have Crusader Brad Thorn and Blues' Anthony Boric at lock.

The men in red have not beaten the All Blacks since 1953 and have never triumphed over them on New Zealand soil.

Their last victory over one of the Tri-Nations superpowers in the southern hemisphere was in New Zealand, though, Wales beating Australia 22-21 in Rotorua in the third-place play-off for the 1987 World Cup.

Wales' solitary victory on the home turf of one of the Tri-Nations giants was the 19-16 triumph over the Wallabies at the Sydney Cricket Ground in 1969.

The last match between Wales and the All Blacks in New Zealand was in Hamilton in 2003, when the home side won by a record 55-3 score, one of 22 Test victories for the southern hemisphere outfit in 25 matches between the two.

But Jones is confident Wales can at least give a good account of themselves having watched Ireland lose 66-28 to the All Blacks last weekend.

Scrum V guide to New Zealand

Jones said: "Having our foot on the plane with a decent performance but without an elusive win coming here, coming down to New Zealand has given us a great opportunity.

"There's a fresh feel, there's a balance of young and old and there's great anticipation and great self-belief that we can come down here and achieve something.

"And we've trained very hard, quite intense on Tuesday and Wednesday and there's a strong belief that we can come down here off the back of South Africa and have a good performance."

Asked if Wales were confident of beating the All Blacks on this occasion, he replied: "We always believe we've got a chance of winning."

Wales' line-out was widely criticised in the wake of defeat by the Springboks, having been an underlying area of concern for many years.

BBC Sport Wales also asked Jones about that facet of play, Jones responding: "I knew that question was going to come up, but I'm glad you asked it.


"I'm not going to be backed into any corners about how bad or good the Welsh line-out is. It's been good in the past and it will be good this weekend."

The lock was castigated by Wales coach Warren Gatland for tripping an English opponent in Wales' Six Nations defeat at Twickenham, but indiscipline has continued to dog Welsh performances.

And Jones says Wales must improve that aspect against the All Blacks.

He said: "Discipline is going to be key for us. You look at the kind of things, the inept penalties - or cynical, that's probably the best word - penalties we've given away in the past few internationals.

"If we eliminate those, we eliminate a loss of six or nine points that have let the southern hemisphere sides back into the games.

Wales complete their two-Test tour against New Zealand at Waikato Stadium, Hamilton on 26 June.

Wales: Lee Byrne (Ospreys); Leigh Halfpenny (Cardiff Blues), Andrew Bishop (Ospreys), Jamie Roberts (Blues), Tom Prydie (Ospreys); Stephen Jones (Scarlets), Mike Phillips (Ospreys); Paul James (Ospreys), Matthew Rees (Scarlets), Adam Jones (Ospreys), Bradley Davies (Blues), Alun Wyn Jones (Ospreys), Jonathan Thomas (Ospreys), Gavin Thomas (Newport Gwent Dragons), Ryan Jones (capt).
Replacements: Huw Bennett (Ospreys), John Yapp (Blues), Deiniol Jones (Blues), Rob McCusker (Scarlets), Tavis Knoyle (Scarlets), Dan Biggar (Ospreys), Jonathan Davies (Scarlets).

Wales tour squad:

Forwards: Bradley Davies, Deiniol Jones, John Yapp (all Cardiff Blues), Huw Bennett, Paul James, Adam Jones, Ian Gough, Alun Wyn Jones, Ryan Jones (capt), Jonathan Thomas, Craig Mitchell (all Ospreys), Rob McCusker, Ken Owens, Matthew Rees, (all Scarlets), Gavin Thomas, (Newport Gwent Dragons).

Backs: Leigh Halfpenny, Richie Rees, Jamie Roberts (all Cardiff Blues), Dan Biggar, Andrew Bishop, Lee Byrne, Mike Phillips, Tom Prydie (all Ospreys), Jonathan Davies, Stephen Jones, Tavis Knoyle (all Scarlets), Will Harries (Newport Gwent Dragons).

Standby list to cover injuries (still in UK):

Blues: Scott Andrews, Chris Czekaj, Rhys Thomas.

Scarlets: Martin Roberts.

Dragons: Jason Tovey.

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see also
New Zealand 42-9 Wales
19 Jun 10 |  Welsh
All Black Vito in to face Wales
15 Jun 10 |  Welsh
Thomas demands Wales discipline
16 Jun 10 |  Welsh
Gatland wants Welsh self-belief
14 Jun 10 |  Welsh
Jones eyes All Blacks arm-wrestle
14 Jun 10 |  Welsh
NZ's 'hands off' message to Wales
14 Jun 10 |  Welsh
Phillips determined before Tests
11 Jun 10 |  Welsh
New Zealand 66-28 Ireland
12 Jun 10 |  Rugby Union
Wales' NZ tour in photos
26 Jun 10 |  Welsh
Wales' rugby fixtures
26 Jun 07 |  Welsh
Wales rugby results archive
15 Oct 03 |  Welsh
All Blacks magic: New Zealand rugby
21 Oct 08 |  Rugby Union
Country profile: New Zealand
28 Nov 11 |  Country profiles
BBC Sport Wales coverage
03 Oct 11 |  Wales

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