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Ioan Cunningham

Wales head coach Ioan Cunningham during a training session

Cunningham names 38-strong training squad

Head coach Ioan Cunningham has named a 39-strong Wales Women’s senior training squad for the forthcoming WXV1 tournament in New Zealand in October.

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The training squad consists of the majority of the players that finished third in the Six Nations and achieved Wales’s highest-ever world ranking of sixth to qualify for the new WXV1 to face the best teams in the world.

The Welsh Rugby Union announced a further seven full-time professional contracted players to add to the 23 full-time professional players who featured in the recent Six Nations campaign.

DFP – Leaderboard

Full back Courtney Keight, centre Hannah Bluck, wing Carys Williams-Morris, prop Abbey Constable, backrowers Kate Williams and Bryonie King and scrum half Megan Davies are the new seven full-time contracted players added to the squad.

Backs Jasmine Joyce and Kayleigh Powell will also be available for Wales after new hybrid contracts were agreed with GB Sevens.

Wales will now have 32 full-time professionals for the 2023/24 campaign.

Cunningham’s side will face USA in a Test match at the Stadiwm CSM in Colwyn Bay on Saturday, September 30th (KO: 2:30pm.)

Wales WXV Fixtures

  • Canada v Wales, Saturday, October 21st, Sky Stadium, Wellington (KO: 4pm local time)
  • New Zealand v Wales, Saturday, 28th, Forsyth Barr Stadium, Dunedin (KO: 4pm local time)
  • Australia v Wales, Friday, November 3rd, Go Media Mount Smart Stadium, Auckland (KO: 7pm local time)

The training squad includes players on fixed-term contracts for the forthcoming WXV tournament and they are experienced internationals Sioned Harries and Kat Evans, Ameila Tutt, who made her Wales debut against Italy in the recent Six Nations campaign, and centre Carys Cox.

Cox qualifies for Wales through her Welsh father and plays for Worcester Warriors. She has played for England U20s but has lived in Wales for the last seven years and has been in with the squad for pre-season.

Five players from the Wales U20s squad – Nel Metcalfe, Sian Jones, Cana Williams, Paige Jones, Rosie Carr and Gwennan Hopkins – have been invited to train with the senior squad after the recent tour of Canada in the summer.

Cunningham, said: “We have named this training squad as we prepare for the Test match against the USA in Colwyn Bay and for the challenge that faces us when we head to New Zealand.

“The squad are excited about being back together after the recent Six Nations and we have already had a good pre-season with our testing results demonstrating the value of having full-time professional athletes available for the sessions we have completed.

“We have already begun our rugby sessions and have seen the value of having players being available full-time to the coaching team. The players desire to improve and to learn has impressed us all and we know we to be a better team than we were in the Six Nations for the WXV.

“Five of the U20s squad have been invited to train with us after their impressive tour of Canada in the summer and their performances in the 39-12 win against Canada. They have brought real enthusiasm and have impressed all of us with their attitude and have shown they are players of real potential.”

Courtney Keight, Ffion Lewis, Kayleigh Powell and Gwen Crabb are in the squad but will not be available for the WXV and will continue their personal rehab and return to play programmes.

Wales Training Squad: (including invited U2os players)

FORWARDS: Kat Evans, Sioned Harries, Abbie Fleming, Alex Callender, Alisha Butchers, Bethan Lewis, Carys Phillips, Cerys Hale, Donna Rose, Georgia Evans, Gwen Crabb, Gwenllian Pyrs, Kelsey Jones, Natalia John, Sisilia Tuipulotu, Abbey Constable, Bryonie King, Kate Williams, Cana Williams, Gwennan Hopkins, Rosie Carr, Paige Jones.

BACKS: Amelia Tutt, Carys Cox, Courtney Keight, Ffion Lewis, Hannah Jones (capt), Jasmine Joyce, Kayleigh Powell, Keira Bevan, Kerin Lake, Lisa Neumann, Lleucu George, Lowri Norkett, Meg Webb, Niamh Terry, Robyn Wilkins, Carys Williams-Morris, Hannah Bluck, Megan Davies, Cath Richards, Nel Metcalfe, Sian Jones.



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