Jonathan Davies: Warren Gatland's Wales 'building for something bigger'

Jonathan Davies takes on Australia
Jonathan Davies could be among the stars coach Warren Gatland rests when Wales face Tonga on Saturday
Autumn international: Wales v Tonga
Venue: Principality Stadium, Cardiff Date: Saturday, 17 November Kick-off: 14:30 GMT
Coverage: Live on BBC One, S4C, BBC Radio Wales, Radio Cymru, the BBC Sport website and app.

Centre Jonathan Davies says beating Australia proves Wales are successfully "building for something bigger".

The win ended a 13-match losing streak against the Wallabies, who Wales meet at the 2019 World Cup in Japan.

Davies says it helps that young players are not scarred by previous defeats.

"Our record hasn't been good in the past [against southern hemisphere teams], but it's a new batch of players coming through and they haven't had that hanging over them," he said.

"You could see the confidence of the players against Australia and it's great to be a part of.

"It's good to get the victory over them, but the most important thing as a squad is that we're building for something bigger and it's great for us moving forward."

The burgeoning confidence in the squad was echoed by captain Alun Wyn Jones.

"Alun Wyn made a point afterwards, that we expect to win big games now," said Jones' fellow British and Irish Lion Davies.

"We have strength in depth, we have confidence and this [Principality Stadium] is our stadium."

After watching Wales stretch their winning run to seven games - the longest of Warren Gatland's reign - the coach said he expects Wales to improve as they build towards the 2019 World Cup.

"We definitely will get better as a team over the next six to 12 months," said Gatland.

"The players really do believe they can have a good autumn, hopefully a successful Six Nations and then start to think about doing well in the World Cup.

"The players will know they are good enough to beat Australia, and good enough to beat Australia when they have just come off a Rugby Championship.

"We spoke in the changing room after the game about how much we think we can improve in the next 12 months.

"We have said in the past that the more time we have together, the better we get. Having that game against Scotland (a 21-10 win in Cardiff) last weekend was good for us and definitely improved our performance for Australia.

"There is some real momentum at the moment."

Davies' thoughts were echoed by fly-half Gareth Anscombe, after Dan Biggar kicked the winning penalty against the Wallabies.

"There are two or three guys in each position who are really starting to put their hands up," said Anscombe.

"So from a Welsh rugby point of view that is healthy, and hopefully we can continue to grow and go from strength to strength."

Wales complete their autumn series by hosting Tonga at the Principality Stadium on Saturday, 17 November and South Africa at the same venue a week later.

Tonga, including Ospreys prop Ma'afu Fia, warmed up for their trip to Cardiff with a 49-38 win over the French Barbarians in Bordeaux on Saturday.


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