Rugby World Cup 2011: Jamie Roberts focuses on Australia clash

Rugby World Cup 2011 third-place play-off: Wales v Australia

  • Venue: Eden Park, Auckland
  • Date: Friday, 21 October
  • Kick-off: 0830 BST / 2030 NZ

Coverage: Live text commentary, scores and report on BBC website; updates on BBC Radio Wales and BBC Radio 5 live; watch live on ITV1, ITV Wales & S4C (Welsh language), live commentary on BBC Radio Cymru (Welsh language) & TalkSport radio

Roberts regrets missed chances

Jamie Roberts insists Wales will put the World Cup semi-final disappointment behind them in a bid to win the third place play-off match against Australia on Friday.

After going down 9-8 to France in a controversial last-four clash, Roberts wants to look forward and not back.

"We'll move on from the disappointment of the weekend. [Australia] is a massive game for us," said Roberts.

"And I'm sure both teams will want to end the tournament on a high."

He added: "I don't think it will be too tough [getting up for the third place play-off].

"We are a very dedicated group of guys. We are very passionate. You wear the red shirt of Wales. Regardless of the occasion you give it your all.

Classic Scrum V: Wales v Australia

"We will be giving everything. It would be disappointing to lose to Australia and go home having lost two games on the bounce.

"[We have] a point to prove to everyone back home. A true test of character is how you react."

Wales take on Australia after the Wallabies lost 20-6 to New Zealand in Sunday's second semi-final.

If Wales beat Australia they would emulate the achievements of the Welsh team at the inaugural Rugby World Cup in 1987.

Twenty-four years ago Wales beat the Wallabies 22-21 in Rotorua thanks to Paul Thorburn's late touchline conversion.

"We want to match their achievement in '87," added Roberts.

"It's an amazing tournament to be a part of. Obviously there is massive disappointment we are not in the final, but certainly to be in the last four is a great achievement for us and to finish third would be outstanding."

Wales captain Sam Warburton is banned for the Australia match after being sent off for his tackle on Vincent Clerc in the semi-final, and Wales are still coming to terms with his absence.

And Roberts believes it has prevented a mouth-watering head-to-head clash with Australia open-side flanker David Pocock.

It's a great a shame we don't get to see Warburton take on Pocock

Jamie Roberts Wales centre

"It's a great a shame we don't get to see Warburton take on Pocock," he said.

"That would have been a incredible battle to watch.

"[Pocock] has proved he is up with the best in the world in this tournament."

Roberts was keen not to dwell on the past and felt the side had no choice but to accept Irish referee Alain Rolland's decision to show Warburton a red card.

"We will move on from the disappointment of the weekend," he said.

"We had chances to win it with 14 men. We played as good a brand of rugby as you can with 14 men on the pitch.

"We had chance to win it and that makes losing all the more painful really.

Asked whether there had been a "sporting injustice", Roberts said: "Call it what you want. The scoreboard is where it counts. I know it's a cliché.

"[Rugby law] is just a grey area. The ref thought it was a red card. You grow up as a kid [being told] the referee's decision is final.

"You go with it and move on."