Hannah Jones On The TikTok Six Nations

Wales women’s rugby captain Hannah Jones insists she is excited about the progress her side has been making ahead of the 2023 TikTok Six Nations.

21.03.23 – Wales Women Rugby Training Session – Hannah Jones during a training session ahead of Wales’ opening Women’s 6 Nations match against Ireland

Jones’ side will be looking to build upon their impressive 2022, finishing third in last year’s Six Nations tournament, and a quarter-final at the Women’s Rugby World Cup.

The tournament provides an opportunity for Wales to build on an exciting period for the team. But head coach Ioan Cunningham will be without experienced players such as Donna Rose, Meg Webb and Alisha Butchers.

Losing several high-profile players will be disappointing however, it provides an opportunity for younger players to put their hands up, as the team looks to evolve during a new World Cup cycle.

Jones, who was named captain of the women’s senior side this month, believes the tournament will provide her side with the opportunity to test themselves, as they look to build on their impressive World Cup performance.

Jones said:

“We don’t want to put too much pressure on results and just go performance to performance. I think the main work on, will be looking at our conversion rate. We created a lot of opportunities at the World Cup, but we weren’t always able to finish them.

“I think we are going to bring something fresh and exciting to our game in the coming months. It’s an attacking brand of rugby we are hoping to play this year.

“It will be a good marker for us, with new players coming through and a few players moving to pastures new. We want to test ourselves against the best and I’m sure the tournament will be a good way to test ourselves and (our new game) to see where we are at.”

It’s a really positive time for women’s rugby at the moment, attendances and viewing figures are increasing and new tournaments like the Celtic Challenge Cup are starting to improve the pathway system.

Wales women have gone from having 12 professional contracts to 25 in the space of a year and you can see the change and the transformation in players already.

“The competition now is really tight; I think you could see how teams are beginning to improve following the World Cup. The aim is to chase down England and France, they have set the standards, we can see the level, and it is for us now to close that gap gradually over the coming seasons,” Jones added.

“We’ve got six new players who have come into the squad ahead of this year’s tournament. We have players making the step up from the Celtic Championship, so it’s great to see that progression and it is fantastic to see the talent that is coming through.

“Coming from the World Cup there is an element where we need to look to the future, so we have to look at that development pathway.

“We need to prepare some of these young players for international rugby and I think the experience in the squad will only help that.”