A Look Towards The Womens’ Tiktok Six Nations

A look towards the Six Nations from Ioan Cunningham, Head Coach of Wales Women’s Senior Rugby Team

22.10.22 – Australia v Wales, Women’s Rugby World Cup, Pool A – The Wales team line up for the national anthem

The Wales Women’s senior team returned from the World Cup in New Zealand having achieved their objective and now have the forthcoming Six Nations campaign in their sights.

Wales reached the quarterfinals of the recent showpiece tournament in the Land of the Long White Cloud and demonstrated the value of the recent investment of full-time and part-time contracts for players.

The success at the recent World Cup was laid during the previous 2022 Six Nations with Wales producing performances full of grit and determination and finishing third in the table.

To say this Wales side caught the imagination of the Welsh public during 2022 would be an understatement.

Now, though, Wales kick of the forthcoming TikTok Six Nations against Ireland at the Arms Park on March 25th.

Ioan Cunningham, the Head coach of the Wales Women’s Senior team, has set his squad the challenge of repeating their success in last year’s tournament.

“We need to back-up what we did last year in the Six Nations as a minimum,” said Cunningham.

“Everybody knows that England and France are the top two sides in the tournament, and then there is a shoot-out between us, Ireland, Scotland and Italy.

“From a player view, we do need to expose some young players, looking ahead to the next World Cup in 2025 and grow the belief and confidence in the squad during this Six Nations.

“It’s all about the balance over the next two years of developing talent and improving as a team.”

Wales are now at the start of a new cycle, with the likes of captain Siwan Lillicrap having retired after the World Cup, and the focus very much on building a team for England 2025.

It means the likes of Hannah Jones, Georgia Evans, Natalia John, Alex Callender and Lleucu George becoming the next generation of players to take the team forward.

men’s World Cup Quarter-Final – Jasmine Joyce, Lisa Neumann and Lowri Norkett of Wales react on the final whistle“The World Cup was a success, reaching the quarter-finals was the goal we set ourselves before we left Wales,” said Cunningham.

“From a performance, point of view, I still believe there is a lot of work for us to do. We have shown in last years Six Nations and in the World Cup that we are a tough team that never goes away.

“Overall, the world cup was a positive experience, both on and off the field, and we have some real time together and that only made us stronger as a group.

The five weeks the squad spent together produced a tight group with a common purpose but also gave Cunningham the opportunity to share ideas with a coaching legend like Wayne Smith.

Smith lifted the World Cup with the All Blacks and with the Black Ferns.

“They had a real infrastructure around their team and they had the biggest number of staff around the Black Ferns, with 21 staff, and that was huge for them.

While Cunningham, his coaching team and the players are determined to have a successful Six Nations, he also sees the bigger picture and the duty his team has to inspire the next generation.

22.10.22 – Australia v Wales, Women’s Rugby World Cup, Pool A – Elinor Snowsill of Wales applauds the Welsh supporters as the Wales team shake hands with the Australian team at the end of the match

 “We want to inspire people, young girls and young boys, to play and get involved in rugby and to support rugby,” said Cunningham.

“We want people to see it as rugby and to watch it as rugby, and we want to inspire players, supporters and sponsors around the game, and see it grow and to get excited about the team.”