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Wales appear to confirm triple boost ahead of England's 'massive threat'

By PA
Wayne Pivac has promised that there will be a reaction against Scotland (Photo by Niall Carson/PA Images via Getty Images)

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Wales boss Wayne Pivac has confirmd a triple personnel boost as they looked ahead to a showdown with England in two weekends time.

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Centre Uilisi Halaholo, who has been out with a hamstring strain, and wing Josh Adams – an absentee against Scotland due to a tight calf muscle – should be fit for Twickenham.

“Certainly, we welcome back anybody from injury,” Pivac said. “Willis (Halaholo) has been training with us for a good week and a half, and he will be a lot sharper for another week. He will come into the reckoning.

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Simon Zebo
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Simon Zebo

“Josh is recovering from a tight calf, and we would expect both of them to be available for England, hopefully.

“Toby (Faletau) has a game next weekend, and we will review that closely, and hopefully Josh Navidi will be back very shortly for Cardiff. We will monitor their progress.”

For now, though, Wales can reflect on an impressive comeback after events in Dublin, before all attention switches to England.

Pivac hailed captain Dan Biggar as “someone who fights for every last inch” after he defied injury and inspired a Guinness Six Nations title revival.

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The defending champions looked down and out after a miserable defeat against Ireland last weekend, but Biggar hauled them off the canvas.

Despite having an issue with his right knee that saw him wince in pain several times, Wales’ captain kicked 15 points, including a match-winning drop-goal 10 minutes from time, to floor Scotland 20-17.

It was a fitting way to mark 100 Test match appearances for Wales and the British and Irish Lions, underlining his unbreakable spirit and commitment to the cause.

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“Dan epitomises for me what you want in a rugby team, and that is someone who fights for every last inch,” Pivac said.

“He doesn’t give an inch, and not only does he fight to win every blade of grass on the pitch, he also does a good job with the match officials.

“I am very pleased he was able to do a good job and captain the team to victory.”

Biggar’s stunning display was not lost on his team-mates either as Wales made it 11 successive victories over Scotland in Cardiff.

Wales hooker Ryan Elias added: “He took a knock early doors, and I thought the way he was rolling around he could be going off.

“It is just a testament to the bloke he is and the player he is. He is so resilient, and he had a great game. I thought he was class again.”

Wales have still got it all to do in this season’s tournament, facing England in a fortnight’s time, then hosting unbeaten title favourites France.

But beating Scotland, who were buoyant on the back of Calcutta Cup success against England seven days earlier, will lift spirits ahead of a trip to Twickenham, where Wales have not claimed a Six Nations win since 2012.

Scotland Wales player ratings Dan Biggar
Dan Biggar /Getty

And there is also encouraging news on the injury front, with number eight Taulupe Faletau making a try-scoring return for Bath on Saturday after seven months out, while flanker Josh Navidi is closing in on a comeback.

Elias added: “We had a long hard look at ourselves following the Irish match. There were quite a few areas we wanted to get better at, and one of them was the physicality side of things.

“For us forwards it was a case of wanting to front-up physically and get stuck into them (Scotland).

“We’ve got to build on this, and hopefully go up another gear against the English because it is a tough old Test match at Twickenham. We need more of the same, and we need to keep getting better.

“You know that England are always going to pose a massive threat, physically.”

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