Wales rugby tour: Williams warns Wales for Tonga Test

Gareth Williams
Gareth Williams took over as Wales Sevens coach in 2014
Wales v Tonga and Samoa
Venue: Auckland and Apia Dates: 16 June to 23 June
Coverage: Live on BBC Radio Wales online, mobile, the BBC Sport app and Connected TV (UK only).

Wales must avoid playing a loose 'sevens-style' game against Tonga, says assistant coach Gareth Williams.

Wales face the Sea Eagles at Auckland's Eden Park on 16 June before travelling to Apia to face Samoa a week later on Friday, 23 June.

National sevens coach Williams is part of caretaker Robin McBryde's staff for the tour.

"We have to be very effective in what we do and not give them any loose ball," he told BBC Wales Sport.

"The exceptional individuals they have in that team are brilliant in that style of play."

Williams is expecting the Pacific Islanders not only to play an expansive, skilful game, but also to take a direct, physical approach.

"They are very tough matches. With Tonga and Samoa, it doesn't get much more physical, and the quality they have individually is there to be seen," he said.

"These are two of the most physical games so it's great for our squad to see where they stand on the international scene."

With 12 senior players away on British and Irish Lions duty, the 32-man Wales squad contains 14 uncapped players.

Media playback is not supported on this device

Wales tour: Tomas Francis relishes Wales bid to make Eden Park history

Tonga have been forced to play the game against Wales in New Zealand because their Teufaiva Sport Stadium home in Nuku'alofa is being redeveloped.

But Williams expects the Sea Eagles to receive enthusiastic support from Auckland's large Tongan population.

"It's going to be quite a hostile environment and atmosphere, and that's fantastic," he added.

"That's what international rugby is about and it's exactly where we want to see these young players and see how they react and perform."

Williams replaced Danny Wilson as a tour coach after the Cardiff Blues boss withdrew from the role in March.

Top Stories