Senior Welsh players held a crisis meeting at lunchtime today to discuss how to dampen immense public expectations ahead of this weekend’s game against New Zealand. The talks, held under the eves of Big D’s burger van in Talbot Green, were in response to press reports commenting upon Welsh chances and referring to the team as ‘second rate carthorses’.
“We tried to laugh off the ‘carthorses’ talk, but as a group of professionals we are finding it exceptionally difficult,” commented Stephen Jones, who wished to remain anonymous. “The pressure is immense at the best of times and it doesn’t help when you get talked up by the opposition. On the rugby development curve, we are just where we want to be; around the ‘third-rate joke’ level. Hell, we’d struggle to give Scotland a game at the moment.”
Jones is just one anonymous player who shares the same view. “Graham Henry says we’ve got an edge, which is just not fair,” claimed Tom Shanklin, whose bid to remain anonymous during much of this month’s internationals were dealt a cruel blow when he bled prodigiously in front of 3,000 stadium fans and another 1,000 watching live at home. “Like Henry’s face, we have no discernable shape whatsoever.”
Other Welsh players are bitter about news that Ladbrokes is pushing odds on Wales losing by a 30-40 points margin out from 11-3 to 4-1. “The rugby world expects Wales to really show up on Saturday,” commented a spokesman from the bookies. “And then not much after that.”