Eli Walker for Wales — but just not yet, say Ospreys
THE Ospreys believe it is too soon for their flying wing Eli Walker to be a selection option for Wales coach Rob Howley.
Shane Williams’s successor in the region’s No. 11 jersey has already matched his try haul last season with two in four games this term.
And after his man-of-the-match display against Connacht six days ago, there was talk about how long it would be before he received a phone call from either Howley or Warren Gatland.
But the Ospreys are uncertain that would aid the 20-year-old’s long-term development.
Business Cards From Only £10.95 Delivered www.myprint-247.co.ukView details
Our heavyweight cards have FREE UV silk coating, FREE next day delivery & VAT included. Choose from 1000's of pre-designed templates or upload your own artwork. Orders dispatched within 24hrs.
Terms: Visit our site for more products: Business Cards, Compliment Slips, Letterheads, Leaflets, Postcards, Posters & much more. All items are free next day delivery. www.myprint-247.co.uk
Contact: 01858 468192
Valid until: Friday, May 31 2013
Ahead of the Pro12 game with Leinster in Swansea on Sunday, backs coach Gruff Rees said: “I think it’s a bit early for Eli to be considered by Wales.
“He can and will play international rugby — I’m sure of that — but because there’s not a brilliant pool of players in Wales, in terms of depth, people can get pushed too early.
“I prefer to see players be consistent over a longer period of time in the pro game, to earn the right to wear that jersey.
“I want to see Eli back up some of his strong performances over the rest of the year. If he can do it week in, week out, that will be a big breakthrough for him.”
The Ospreys insist they are delighted at the way Walker has started the campaign, with the youngster showing confidence and a willingness to run at defenders. Blessed with electric pace, he made 10 carries against Connacht, made three clean breaks and left eight defenders clutching thin air.
“He’s a good prospect,” said Rees.
“I remember being excited by him as he came through the academy ranks. He stepped up at Premiership level and we’ve had to nurture him. He’s had setbacks but he has a real commitment to being the best player he can be.
“He absorbs every bit of information you give him. We are trying to get him into good areas. He’s showing an aptitude for getting his hands on the ball and causing opponents problems.”
Matthew Morgan is set to feature at fly-half this weekend, probably alongside Rhys Webb, with Kahn Fotuali’i having been away with Samoa.