Rory Thornton: Ospreys lock eager for Wales debut against Samoa

Rory Thornton
Lock Rory Thornton has established himself at Ospreys over the past two seasons
Test match: Samoa v Wales
Venue: Apia Park, Apia Date: 23 June Kick-off: 07:30 BST
Coverage: Live on BBC Two Wales and online. Live commentary on BBC Radio Wales MW and online, Radio Cymru online, mobile, the BBC Sport app and Connected TV (UK only).

Lock Rory Thornton says he is "champing at the bit" ahead of winning his first Wales cap against Samoa in Apia on Friday, 23 June.

The 22-year-old was an unused squad member during the 2017 Six Nations, as well as the 2016 autumn internationals.

"It's been building as I've been in a few camps now, but to finally get my name called out on that team sheet was an awesome feeling," he said.

"I've been champing at the bit these last few camps, training hard."

The Ospreys player comes in to replace Cory Hill, who was called up by the British and Irish Lions following Wales' 24-6 win over Tonga.

Coach Robin McBryde has made seven changes in all to the side that started that game at Eden Park last Friday

Another two uncapped players - scrum-half Tomos Williams and lock Adam Beard - are also on the bench.

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Thornton made 25 appearances for Ospreys in the 2016-17 campaign, but expects a big transition to international rugby.

"I've been playing a lot for the Ospreys this year and being involved in the Pro12 and the [European] Challenge Cup has given me quite a bit of experience," the former Wales Under-20s captain told BBC Wales Sport.

"But Test rugby is a completely different animal, so I'm really looking forward to the challenge on Friday against a strong Samoan team.

"Like every young Welsh boy I want to play for Wales, but when it actually comes round you get that sensation of pride."

Thornton is part of an inexperienced Wales side, with the forwards having won just 31 caps between them.

"Samoa have a big experienced pack and we have a couple of young guys here looking to blood themselves on the international stage, so I think it'll be a good challenge overall," Thornton added.

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