Ireland vs Wales Preview

Ireland have really impressed so far in this tournament. A close loss last week in a thrilling game with PNG and shock win against Italy sees them as good as through to the next round, however a win for PNG and they will miss out. Wales on the other hand will be looking forward to getting home, after a very tough tournament for them.

There will be no love lost in this game, especially in the forwards, as a few of the players are team mates at club level. Morgan Knowles will have to face up to ST Helens colleagues Kyle Amor and Louis Mccarthy-Scarsbrook in this clash, Welsh winger Regan Grace also plays for the saints.

Ireland are clear favourites coming into this game and it's clear to see why, Ireland have come into this tournament a far better side than anyone expected, they have played with a real will and determination and this attitude has got them within inches of the quarterfinals.

Ireland: Ireland's play style has been so massively unpredictable and exciting in their opening two fixtures, lots of early kicks, line moves and set plays. I expect that Ireland will look to settle down a little more in this game, a few more one up plays and less offloading in their own half.

Ireland will look to the wings and use the width of the pitch to look for points. The Irish will look to avoid kicking to Regan Grace, due to his ability to create something out of nothing, so expect early questions to be asked of Rhys Williams under the high ball.

Wales: The Welsh are going to take the up the middle approach, looking to use their forwards to march them down field in their search for points. The Welsh end product is going to have to be better in this game, as in recent weeks they have failed to make the most out of big opportunities.

This is expected to be captain Craig Kopczak final game for Wales as he enters the twilight of his career, he will certainly look to end on a positive note.

Conclusion: I anticipate that Ireland will dominate every aspect of this game, Wales will try to keep this game close but I don't see them keeping this firing Irish side at bay for long. I predict Ireland have this by a minimum of 20.



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