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McBryde wary of All Blacks skills

Wales assistant coach Robin McBryde readily accepts that opposition teams have to find "something special" against world champions New Zealand.

The All Blacks will arrive at the Millennium Stadium on Saturday on a 19-Test unbeaten run, while Wales have not beaten them since 1953 and already this month came unstuck against Argentina and Samoa.

Wales' already acute degree of difficulty, meanwhile, has been compounded by star wing George North's withdrawal because of a hip injury suffered during training earlier this week.

North joins Adam Jones, Alun-Wyn Jones, Dan Lydiate, Richard Hibbard, Ian Evans and Dan Biggar on the injury list, although Wales are at least boosted by centre Jonathan Davies' return from groin trouble that meant he missed the Pumas and Samoa fixtures.

"They (New Zealand) are the one side you measure yourself against. They are the world champions, the ones you want to beat," McBryde said.

"They get a little bit more focus in preparation because you know what is coming.

"We have paid due respect to them, they have played great rugby and it is a great challenge.

"We have not only focused on New Zealand this autumn, but you know it takes something extra, something special, to match the All Blacks and to beat them.

"We have jumped on any sign of a perceived weakness.

"They have said they were not happy with their performances in Scotland and Italy. Scotland put them under a bit of pressure and managed to keep them under pressure in their 22 leading up to one of their tries, and Italy also caught them on one or two scrums and took the game to them as well."

McBryde has backed Liam Williams, North's replacement, to grasp his opportunity in what will be only a second Test match appearance after he made his Wales debut against the Barbarians more than five months ago.

Williams, who plays full-back for the Scarlets, goes straight into the starting XV from outside Wales' initial match-day 23.

On losing North, McBryde said: "It is a blow. We are well aware of the threat George poses with regards to his strong running, ability under the high ball, breaking tackles and his work-rate.

"There is no denying it is a blow, but we are fortunate to have someone like Liam, who has performed consistently well for the Scarlets, to fill in for him.

"The signs are that he can deal with it (the pressure of facing the All Blacks), but there is only one way to find out.

"One thing that is evident is whenever Liam puts on the shirt for the Scarlets or for Wales is he is full of life, does not take a backward step and gives as good as he gets."