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Wales confident at rugby leauge World Cup

Wales captain Craig Kopczak is confident his side have the talent to make an impact on the World Cup and will be looking to his teammates in the pack to lead the way.
Wales confident at rugby leauge World Cup
by AAP

By Ian Laybourn

LONDON, Oct 23 PA - Wales captain Craig Kopczak is confident his side have the talent to make an impact on the World Cup and will be looking to his teammates in the pack to lead the way.

With Wigan's double-winning forwards Ben Flower and Gil Dudson firmly part of the Welsh international scene and Kopczak joined this year by his Huddersfield front-row teammate Larne Patrick, coach Iestyn Harris can load his pack with a wealth of Super League experience.

And Harris is also able to call on the NRL expertise of St George Illawarra second-rower Tyson Frizzell, who joined up with the squad this week after proving his fitness and flying in from Sydney.

"We're very talented in that area," the Kopczak said.

"The size around the place is huge, you know what direction we're going to be going in."

Wales failed to qualify for the last tournament in 2008 but have twice been semi-finalists in the past and Kopczak is confident they can make progress through the group stages.

They kick off their campaign against Italy in the second half of Saturday's double-header at the Millennium Stadium before meeting the United States and the Cook Islands.

"Obviously we'd like to win the competition," Kopczak, 26, said.

"Realistically we'd like to get as far as the semis. I know it's a big ask but I think we can cause some upsets.

"We've got so much talent in our team, we are obviously going to do something in this competition."

Wales' biggest test is expected to come on Saturday when they meet an Italian team on a high following their stunning 15-14 win over England in Salford last Saturday.

"I haven't seen the game but I have to say I was shocked," Kopczak added.

Italy coach Carlo Napolitano is expecting even more from his side after their heroics against England and believes they will need to improve against a well-coached Welsh outfit.

"There is room for improvement," Napolitano said.

"That result against England doesn't give us two points and a win in the World Cup but it shows we're here."




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