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Lloyd wants Wales to unleash attacking qualities against France

Pathway | 30th June 2021

Ethan Lloyd hopes Wales can unleash their attacking qualities when they face France in the Under 20 Six Nations on Thursday.

The scrum half has been handed his first start of the Championship as Wales under-20 head coach, Ioan Cunningham, makes eight changes to the side that suffered defeat against Ireland last week.

The Cardiff Rugby academy member is enjoying life in camp with the squad but has called for an 80-minute performance this week as Wales are determined to prove a point after last week’s loss left a bitter taste in the mouth.

“It’s been really good, to be fair, to be in with the boys after a while of being in the house,”

“Being with everyone for a long time has been good and obviously it’s been a while since everyone has played. So there was a bit of rust at the start but it’s just good to be back out there.

“Obviously everyone wants to start, but whatever is the best role for the team is what you have to bring. If you’re coming off the bench or starting, you have to do the best for the team.

“We spoke on Sunday about how no-one wants the feeling of losing again, especially in the way we did. 

“Everyone from the Monday have focused on France, knowing we don’t want to feel like we did on Sunday.

“We’ve had a lot of energy throughout the week, and hopefully we’ll show that on the weekend.

“They’re a typical French team who can be unpredictable but have got a physical pack.

“We need to be ready for anything and I don’t think there’s any time during the game where we can afford to switch off against them.

“They’ve got flair so we need to stay focused and stay in the moment throughout the whole game.

“We’ve spoken during the week about bringing more variety to our play, and we can definitely challenge them with our attack.

“We haven’t had many opportunities over the last two games but this weekend we can show that we can attack and hopefully score some tries.

“Our defence needs to stay switched on, and it might be an open game.”

Lloyd is the latest in a long-line of homegrown scrum half talents to come out of the Cardiff Blues pathway.

However, he is optimistic that he can learn from experienced team-mates such as Welsh internationals Tomos and Lloyd Williams at the Arms Park as he looks to take the next steps in his development.

The former Treorchy player added: “I’m from the Rhondda, and the same rugby club as Tomos Williams so I’ve always looked up to him as a scrum half.

“At Cardiff, you have experienced players like Lloyd Williams and Lewis Jones as well, so it’s good to look up to them.

“They have so much experience, including at international level, so you have to look at them and the things they do.

“You need to take what you can from it and bring it into your own game.

“Obviously in the back of your mind you’re always looking ahead, but at the minute it’s all eyes on this.

“We’ve still got three more games and can still win the Championship, so all my focus at the moment is on this.

“This experience with Wales under-20 has been good. You come through the age grades to play under-16s, under-18s and then under-20s is a big one to aim for, so being able to do that has been good.

“It’s good to play the Championship at the Arms Park and we all know the ground well and we’ll have fans there again this week.

“That was class week as all we’ve thought about during lockdown was playing in front on people again. To do it while playing for Wales was even better so it was a good feeling.”