March 6, 2020 / 7:23 AM / a month ago

Pivac says Wales ready to produce 'big performance' against England

FILE PHOTO: Rugby Union - Six Nations Championship - Wales v Italy - Principality Stadium, Cardiff, Britain - February 1, 2020 Wales head coach Wayne Pivac during the warm up before the match REUTERS/Rebecca Naden

(Reuters) - Wales head coach Wayne Pivac said he expects a “big performance” from his team in Saturday’s Six Nations contest against England after a surge in the intensity of their training this week.

Holders Wales enjoyed a dominant 42-0 victory over Italy in their tournament opener but defeats by Ireland and France have derailed their hopes of retaining the title.

Pivac, who took charge after last year’s World Cup, said the team led by skipper Alun Wyn Jones had been fired up in training as they seek a first Six Nations win over England at Twickenham since 2012.

“The level of intensity has noticeably gone up in training, certainly in the live stuff, and it has been no holds barred,” Pivac told reporters.

“That tells me a big performance is coming. You’ve only got to listen to Alun Wyn during the week. The intensity is there in his voice and everything he’s done in training. He’s led from the front.

“Clearly they’ve got a great record (at Twickenham) and one we respect. It is one which tells us we’ll have to be at the peak of our powers to win.”

England head coach Eddie Jones said his side was prepared for a tough test but keen to dish out revenge after losing to Wales in Cardiff last year.

“They’ve lost two games in a row. They’ve got a new coach and they’ll want to make a statement,” Jones said. “You’ve got to remember they beat us last year so we owe them one.”

England’s final game, against Italy in Rome next week, has been postponed by the tournament organisers due to the coronavirus outbreak.

Reporting by Shrivathsa Sridhar in Bengaluru; Editing by Kevin Liffey

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