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Getting to know: Wales U20s blindside Ryan Woodman

By Liam Heagney
Wales' Ryan Woodman at the 2023 tournament in Stellenbosch (Photo by World Rugby via Getty Images)

Ryan Woodman had just finished signing the waiver to climb the DHL Stadium rooftop for a photoshoot when he took on the RugbyPass Q&A challenge ahead of this Saturday’s start to the 2024 World Rugby U20 Championship.

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The back-rower has timed him run to rude health perfectly to ensure he is fit and ready to lead Wales out when they take on New Zealand at Athlone on match day one.

A thumb injury sustained versus the Sharks in the EPCR Challenge Cup last January meant that the blindside flanker sat out the entire age-grade Six Nations.

However, he returned to first-team action with the Dragons in their Judgement Day clash with Scarlets on June 1 and has now been handed the U20s captaincy for his country’s World Cup campaign which also includes pool matches against Spain and defending champions France.

Missing the Six Nations won’t hamper Woodman in the slightest; he is very well experienced at this level of international rugby as this is his third season involved at U20s and he was also the captain last year.

Fixture
World Rugby U20 Championship
Wales U20
34 - 41
Full-time
New Zealand U20
All Stats and Data

Read on to find out why maths, golf and running around the field with the top off all get a mention in his Getting to Know series answers:

THE BASICS
Born: February 2, 2004;
Age-grade debut: vs Scotland, Six Nations 2022;
Club: Dragons;
Position: Back row;
Height: 6ft 5;
Weight: 107kg;
Boots: RS15 Adidas;
Gumshield: Smart mouthguard;
Headgear: No;
School: Caldicot.

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RATE YOURSELF (out of 100)
Pace: 79;
Passing: 80;
Tackling: 85.

THE PAST
My favourite own country player of all time is… Sam Warburton;

Favourite try I have ever scored is… Munster away;

A rugby memory that makes me smile is… Beating Italy in my first year 20s;

The moment I realised I could make it is… I haven’t made it yet, have I. Probably this season to be honest;

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One piece of advice I would give to my younger self is… Go to the gym;

My best subject in school was… Probably maths;

The first player who made me fall in love with rugby is… Taulupe Faletau;

Growing up, my position was… Always back row;

The coach who has most impacted my game is… Sam Hobbs.

THE PRESENT
My best attributes on the field are… Work rate;

One thing I’m doing to improve my education is… Not much;

My favourite current Wales player is… Trying to think who the current players are. Aaron Wainwright;

My favourite YouTuber is… Good Good Golf;

My hardest working teammate is… Morgan Morse;

My most skilful teammate is… Harri Ford;

My favourite training drill is… Two vs ones under the post and then the loser has to run around the field with their top off;

My favourite music artist is… Right now? It’s tough this one. Zach Bowman.

THE FUTURE
A player who could go all the way is… In my team? Morsey, Morgan Morse;

If I could play with anyone, I would like to play with… I don’t know actually. Antoine Dupont, probably;

I will be happy with my career if I… I’m not sure to be honest. I’d be happy if I played for the Lions;

One thing I want to add to my game is… Carrying dominance;

If I could play in any other country, I would play in… Probably one of the southern hemisphere countries. They’re different to the northern hemisphere. Any one of them;

One person I want to meet is… Bloody hell. Patrick Mahomes;

One trophy I would love to win is… This trophy (World Rugby U20 Championship).

  • Click here to sign up to RugbyPass TV for free live World Rugby U20s Championship matches from Saturday, June 29

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