Josh Adams has hailed the Wales players’ professionalism as they prepare to continue their Six Nations title and Grand Slam quest against a backdrop of political turmoil.
Worcester wing Adams’ late try sealed victory for Wales over England a fortnight ago.
And the unbeaten Six Nations leaders now face Scotland at Murrayfield, where a fourth successive win in this season’s tournament would leave them chasing silverware against Ireland in Cardiff on Saturday week.
But while Wales look to capture European rugby’s biggest prize, off the field it is a story of domestic strife as debate rages about so-called ‘Project Reset’ and how Wales’ professional regional game will look from next season.
Talks now appear to be deadlocked, a proposed Scarlets-Ospreys merger is off the table and considerable uncertainty remains.
But despite potential distractions, Adams has no doubt that Wales are concentrated totally on their Murrayfield mission.
“We know the importance of this game, and we have to back up the performance against England,” he said. “We are ready to go.
“The boys have taken it in their stride. Every time we have gone on to the training field the focus has been on the rugby.
“All the boys have been really professional in how they have dealt with the situation. The focus is all on Saturday.
“All the goings-on off the field might add fuel to the fire.
“Everything we have done in training has been as normal, and the focus has been there, which has been really good with the distractions elsewhere.
“Everybody is feeling confident. We are just looking forward to getting out there, and come 2.15pm on Saturday, we will let it rip.”
Adams has been one of Wales’ success stories during a 12-Test unbeaten run that stretches back to February last year.
He scored tries in Wales’ last two Six Nations games, and is rapidly emerging as a player who could shine in the high-octane atmosphere of a World Cup later this year.
“I am feeling good at the minute,” the 23-year-old added. “I am looking forward to taking another opportunity and putting my best foot forward again.
“Time in the jersey does help. You learn with each Test match you play.
“The majority of the guys involved in the autumn Tests have come through into the Six Nations. Togetherness is really good.
Alun Wyn Jones offers his thoughts on tomorrow's big @SixNationsRugby clash with Scotland 🏴 Mae'r capten am weld Cymru'n adeiladu ar eu perfformiadau hyd yn hyn yn y gystadleuaeth. #HWFN pic.twitter.com/bZ4iSMSX0G— Welsh Rugby Union 🏉 (@WelshRugbyUnion) 8 March 2019
“All the boys get on well, and that reflects on how we play. We all work really hard for each other. If someone makes a mistake, the guy next to you is working hard to fix it.”
Although Wales have beaten Scotland 11 times from the last 12 attempts, including four out of five in Edinburgh, memories remain from Murrayfield two years ago.
On that occasion, Wales let slip a 13-9 interval advantage and conceded 20 unanswered second-half points as they crashed to an emphatic defeat.
“The boys are still hurting a little bit from that,” Adams said. “They did not perform to the best of their ability, and that was the most frustrating thing.
“If you are a per cent or two off, teams will punish you. It is a little bit of revenge for two years ago, and I am sure the boys who were there that day will want to make amends.
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