sport

Davies expects Trial test

Jonathan Davies is preparing himself for a "fiercely-contested" encounter when his "Probables" face a "Possibles" side in the Wales Senior Trial match.

The trial match is being played for the first time in 14 years on Friday, ahead of next month's two-Test tour of South Africa.

Wales head coach Warren Gatland will use the fixture to help him cement his 31-man squad for the trip.

Centre Davies said: "It has been a good, interesting week, and it has been different," said Wales and British and Irish Lions centre Davies, who will line up for the Probables alongside regular Test team midfield partner Jamie Roberts.

"We are preparing for a fiercely-contested game. We have had good preparations, and I am sure the boys are looking forward to it.

"It has the feel of a Welsh derby match, but it's about making sure we go out there as a team and collectively show how we can perform."

One player Davies is looking forward to seeing in action is 20-year-old Scarlets back Jordan Williams, who will line up on the Probables' left wing and has been compared to Welsh legend Shane Williams.

"Jordan has shown all year how much of a threat he is with the ball," Davies added.

"It's an opportunity for him, and we just have to make sure we put him in those areas where he can show what he has got. He is a huge talent, and someone I am looking forward to seeing play.

"It is very difficult to make comparisons for players at a young age. I would just say Jordan has the most talent I have seen in the Scarlets squad with his ability, footwork and handling skills.

"He has it all to be a success, and hopefully, he can be something special."

Pride

There is also some family pride at stake for Davies, with his brother James providing back-row cover on the Possibles bench.

"I have played against him in the back garden before," Davies senior added. "It will be weird when he comes on.

"Hopefully, he does well, but nowhere near me and he does not get up on me. It's an opportunity for him, and I hope he gets the chance to show what he can do.

"The family are probably daunted about the prospect of the game. I think my mum is hoping we don't make a fool of ourselves and end up in a scrap!"

The bigger picture is Wales' trip to South Africa, which features Tests against the Springboks in Durban on June 14 and Nelspruit seven days later, while there is also a midweek game with the Eastern Kings scheduled in Port Elizabeth.

Wales have only beaten the Springboks once before, in a home fixture 16 years ago, and will travel without a host of injured players, which includes Sam Warburton, Leigh Halfpenny and Justin Tipuric.

"It is going to be tough for the squad that goes out there," Davies said. "South Africa showed in the autumn (this season) their physicality, and when they had opportunities they took them to score.

"We can't rest on our laurels and expect things to happen. We have to take our chances. The squad that goes out there needs to prepare and make sure we don't step back.

"We have to meet the challenge that has been thrown down.

"For all the boys, playing for your country is a huge honour and the energy in training has been excellent. That will go for whoever goes on the tour.

"Every game for Wales could be your last, so you have to prepare well and do everything you can for it."