North: Weird to play without Gatland

Tue, 24 Apr 17:13:00 2012

George North admits it will be "weird" when Wales travel to Australia without Warren Gatland, but insists they can emerge victorious down under despite the absence of their coach.

RUGBY Wales wing George North - 0

Double Grand Slam winner Gatland has been sidelined from the tour as he recovers from the injuries he suffered in a fall at his home in New Zealand earlier this month.

"It's obviously bad news for Warren and we hope it's a speedy recovery," said the Scarlets three-quarter. "But I am sure Rob (Howley) will do a good job as all the other coaching staff will do."

He added: "It will maybe affect us a little bit with the head coach not out there, but the quality of players we have now and the quality of the coaching staff is very high.

"It will be a bit weird not having him there but I am sure we can cope."

The Kiwi, the favourite to lead the British & Irish Lions to Australia in 2013, broke both his heels and Rob Howley has been handed the reins as caretaker coach while Gatland recuperates.

The RBS 6 Nations champions face a tough summer with a three-Test series against the Wallabies following on from a Millennium Stadium appointment against the Barbarians.

Wales' previous efforts to build on Grand Slam success in 2005 and 2008 ultimately fell short but North says there is no lack of hunger in their impressive young squad following their latest Six Nations clean sweep.

"We have been guilty in the past of slowing down after a slam but the boys we have here are keen to push on achieve more, we believe we can do that with the quality of players we have," he said.

"Australia are a hard team to play wherever you play them but it will be tough to play three Tests in their back yard. But it's where we need to be, we need to push ourselves to see where we are as a team and a squad."

PA Sport

Comment 1 - 15 of 15

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  1. @YAHOO. Nobody said his ancestry was MORE welsh than­ English, I just said his ancestry is Welsh, it is. Yes­ he has english ancestry too but that dont make him a­ "norfolk lad". As you correctly point out, he­ was only born in England because his father was­ stationed there at the time, a little later he would­ have been born in Hong Kong, later again and he would­ have been born in Wales. He was a victim of­ circumstances, you can't hold it against the lad­ foerever that he was born in England, Im sure he feels­ bad enough about it as it is.

    From Huey, on Thu 26 Apr 9:09
  2. Yahoo, see if you can tell me the heritage behind Swing­ Low Sweet Chariot, Lancasters SCOTTISH caps, the news­ that England might be after Jake White(not English),­ Nick Mallet (not English) and isnt there a certain NZ­ man in their sights hahahaha. Tuilagi, Hapne, Hartley,­ Matt Stevens, Botha, Barrit etc etc hahahahaha. And­ also stop hiding behind another alias cos that is just­ sad, anyway come on lets get together and sing that old­ English classic.............SWING LOW, SWEET­ CHARIOT..............HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA.

    From DONNA, on Wed 25 Apr 19:43
  3. Donna are you looking for a good strong englishman like­ george norths mother,you have more english players in­ your team and not forgetting your south sea islander­ and your manager is a kiwi and he has an englishman in­ his set up whoaaaa, you have just made yourself look a­ right idiot, pmsl

    From YAHOO, on Wed 25 Apr 19:19
  4. Hahahahah still bitter jealous English people on here­ is it, haha with comments regarding nationaities, when­ England are thought of has the South African 2nds and­ none of the idiots can tell me the connection with a­ song like Swing Sweet Chariot hahahahaha. You morons­ need to worry why the likes of Farrell turned down the­ role with England, and the state the national side are­ in hahahahah. Ned Kelly = A Irish wannabe outlaw­ hahaha

    From DONNA, on Wed 25 Apr 19:12
  5. Comment hidden due to its low rating. Show

    To all you welsh idiots he was born in kings lynn­ norfolk his father is english and was serving in the­ raf at raf marham ,his father was then posted to raf­ sek kong in hong kong for three years then got posted­ back to raf valley in anglessey where his mother came­ from,how do i know because i was at raf marham when his­ father was there also his father was an raf police­ man,who played a bit of rugby for marham,so how is his­ ancestory more welsh than english, doh!!

    From YAHOO, on Wed 25 Apr 18:40
  6. Huey (spuey what are you talking about man?)

    From Peter C, on Wed 25 Apr 16:45
  7. Perhaps the more pertinent question that the Welsh­ haters on here should be asking themselves is why if­ North had the option to play for England did he decide­ to play for Wales? It can hardly be that he was worried­ about not getting selected given he would stroll in to­ the current Englans set up, and the answer might just­ help you understand what has been wrong with your team­ for the past few years.

    From Bob, on Wed 25 Apr 16:11
  8. Actually these comments reflect the English­ attitude...after all ONE THIRD of their World Cup Team­ were from....South Africa, New Zealand, Pacific­ Islands...Australia...they just can't understand­ that some people are really proud to be playing for­ their nation!!!

    From Vincent, on Wed 25 Apr 15:08
  9. Well said Huey,why would he want to play for anyone­ else than Cymru? We are the best team in the Northern­ Hemisphere!!

    From Graham H, on Wed 25 Apr 14:51
  10. Jealousy is a terrible thing guys, "out and out­ English", haha!! Living somewhere for 3 months­ doesn't make you that nationality. I lived in­ England for 4 years, doesn't MAKE me English nor­ does the fact I was born in Wales MAKE me Welsh. What­ dictates your nationality more than anything else is­ what you percieve yourself to be. George North­ considers himself Welsh and always has, end of story.­ It isn't as though he wanted to play for his­ country of birth but wasn't good enough and so­ settled for any team he could qualify for like some­ players I could mention.

    From Huey, on Wed 25 Apr 13:47
  11. Comment hidden due to its low rating. Show

    He is out and out English!!, why does he want to get­ humilliated down under with wales????/.

    From Peter C, on Wed 25 Apr 12:30
  12. Comment hidden due to its low rating. Show

    Huey, you mean his Mum had to come across the border to­ find a bloke she really wanted? Come come dear boy,­ that hardly makes 'his ancestry Welsh'.

    From DrRoss, on Wed 25 Apr 12:29
  13. @ YAHOO, Because he is Welsh, just ask him. He may not­ have been born in Wales but his ancestory is Welsh and­ he has played and lived in Wales pretty much his whole­ life. Do you realise how jealous and petty it sounds­ when people keep bringing this up? He spent a few­ months as a baby, living in England and this somehow­ means he shouldn't be playing for the nation he­ considers his home?

    From Huey, on Wed 25 Apr 12:07
  14. Comment hidden due to its low rating. Show

    Ahh george north a good norfolk lad why is he playing­ for wales?

    From YAHOO, on Wed 25 Apr 9:34
  15. Comment hidden due to its low rating. Show

    At least excuses are now in place for what will follow,­ it's time the Wallabies reminded Wales just how far­ they have to travel to be rated amongst the 'big­ boys'...Ned Kelly

    From JOHN, on Wed 25 Apr 9:15
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