Article

Edwards scoffs at Wales favouritism talk

25 February 2012 01:14

Wales defence coach Shaun Edwards has denied his side are favourites ahead of their Six Nations clash with England on Saturday.

Both nations are undefeated heading into the match at Twickenham, but Wales have looked distinctly more impressive in their opening wins over Ireland and Scotland.

Wales have the opportunity to seal the Triple Crown with victory over England, but Edwards denied his side would enter the match as favourites.

"If people say we are favourites then, just because it's someone else's opinion, don't expect us to accept that," Edwards said.

"I've played Test rugby and when you carry that ball into the first collision or first tackle you're not thinking who was favourite or who wasn't before the match. It's of no consequence to us really."

"It would be very rewarding for the team and for the whole of Wales really (to win a triple crown).

"It's a big weekend for Welsh sport with Nathan Cleverley boxing for the title and Cardiff in London for the League Cup final."

"To have the chance to win a triple crown at Twickenham, something that hasn't been done before would be a great thing for the whole of the Welsh nation, not just the sport."

Edwards said his side were hoping to exploit the inexperience of the England team they would be facing.

"The axis of the England team hasn't played together a great deal," he said.

"The eight, nine and 10 will be playing together for the first time so like any axis we will be putting pressure on it."

"Let's hope we can upset it, because that's our job as defensive unit, to make life as difficult as we can for our opponents. The game against England will be no different."

One negative for Wales will be the absence of back James Hook, who has failed to recover from a bout of chicken pox in time for the match.

"James Hook has been taken out of the matchday 22. We gave him every chance to recover but we've taken advice and asked James how he felt himself," Edwards said.

"But he fell short, he was close to playing but he fell short."

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