Women's Six Nations: Wales must have 'belief' to beat England

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Wales Women got their Six Nations off to a winning start
Women's Six Nations: Italy v Wales
Date: Saturday, 11 February Venue: Cardiff Arms Park Kick-off: 11:30 GMT
Coverage: Live video on the BBC Sport website, connected TV and BBC Sport app plus score updates on BBC Radio Wales, BBC Radio Cymru online and app

Wales Women head coach Rowland Phillips says his players must have an "overwhelming belief" they can beat world champions England.

As a player, Phillips played twice for Wales against then-world champions New Zealand in 1988 with Wales going on to lose both Tests.

Now he has challenged his side to show the confidence to do what he and his team-mates could not.

"In this match confidence is important, but also belief," said Phillips.

"As a player I've played against the world champions. I always think back and try to reflect, did we actually believe that we could do it?"

Wales beat Italy in their opening game of the championship 20-8, which means they have played five and won five since Phillips took charge in 2016.

Phillips said his squad will take heart from their 13-0 victory over England at St Helen's in 2015.

"England are always a threat. They're probably expected to win this championship every year because of the pool of players they have available," said Phillips.

"They've got a very good club structure in England. And now they're full time, that in itself makes them a formidable opposition."

Rowland Phillips
In 1988, as a player, Phillips was part of the Wales team which lost the first test in Christchurch 52-3, before losing the second test in Auckland 54-9 against then-world champions, New Zealand

Wales are third in the table after the opening weekend of games, with England second after fighting back at Twickenham to beat France on the opening weekend. Ireland are currently top.

But Phillips insists he's not concerned his side did not score a fourth try against the Italians which would have given them a bonus point.

"The game finished off with us actually preventing Italy from getting a losing bonus point. That in itself was a success," said Phillips.

"We never really got into a position to go for a bonus point.

"It wasn't in our thoughts then. It didn't frustrate us then and is certainly doesn't frustrate us now. To go to Italy to get a result is a big achievement."

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Women's Six Nations: Watch the winning moment as England beat France

The game against England will kick off at 11.30 GMT on Saturday at Cardiff Arms Park, while the men meet each other later at the Principality Stadium.

Phillips urged fans to take advantage of the fact that two international matches are taking place in close proximity on the same day.

"It's a great opportunity for anyone who's around Cardiff to come in and support the girls to see how much Wales women's rugby is moving forward," Phillips added.

"There's a 5,000 capacity there on Saturday and we want to fill it up."

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