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Can Wales win the Six Nations 2023? Absolutely not. And in fact, they’ll be lucky to avoid the wooden spoon this year. Ever since Warren Gatland left Wales, the team has been spiraling downhill. Losses to Georgia and Italy last year were the final straw, with the Kiwi maestro getting recalled as head coach to revive Welsh rugby.
However, this Wales Six Nations campaign it’s too little, too late from Warren Gatland, with the Welsh now unable to win the tournament. Opening against Ireland in Cardiff, Wales were woeful, conceding a point a minute for the first 20 minutes and losing 34-10. On the road against Scotland in Round Two, Wales were even worse, going down 35-7 to the Scots. In Round Three, Wales fell to England 20-10, while last week saw their first win, a tight one against Italy 29-17.
We preview the Wales Six Nations squad and odds, with all the information you need to bet on the Six Nations 2023.
Wales Odds Six Nations
Heading into the tournament, Wales were fourth favourite in the betting odds. Their relatively generous odds appear to have been misplaced, however, as their comprehensive defeats at the hands of Ireland and Scotland have saw the Wales odds Six Nations plummet. Now, after just one win from four games, Wales can no longer mathematically win the Six Nations, and as a result no bookies are offering odds on their chances of winning.
Wales Six Nations Chances of Winning
Heading into the Six Nations, Wales were something of a dark horse. Their favourite son, Warren Gatland, had returned—and we all know what happened last time Gatland took over the reins of Welsh rugby (they won the Six Nations). Would the same occur this time?
Four rounds into the Six Nations, and the light has well and truly been shone on Wales. Gatland is no over night miracle worker, and with a 24 point loss at home first up, backed up by a 28 point loss on the road, then another 10 point loss at home, Wales have officially ruled out any chance of winning the Six Nations. Rather, you’d think their sights have already switched to damage control. The process has begun with a win over Italy last weekend, but will need to continue against France this coming round.
The real question is: Can Wales avoid the wooden spoon this year?
Latest Wales Six Nations Game
Finally, Warren Gatland’s men got on the board in this year’s Six Nations. It wasn’t pretty, and there was plenty of luck involved, but Wales managed to scrape enough tries and bounces of the ball to defeat Italy 29-17 in Round Four. The result was tighter than Wales would have liked however, with a 22-3 halftime lead becoming a nail biting finish as Italy roared back into the match in the second half.
Remaining Wales Six Nations Games
Wales have one game remaining in the Six Nations, with this match being played on the road. Here’s how the rest of the Wales Six Nations campaign will unfold:
- France – Away (18th of March)
Wales do not have an easy road ahead of them to round out the Six Nations this year. To ensure they avoid the wooden spoon, the Welsh will need to put in a good performance in Paris on Saturday.
Next Wales Six Nations Game
Wales face the unenviable task of heading to Paris to play a French team that are playing hot rugby, and need a big win in order to stay alive in the tournament. France will know that bonus points and points differential are just as important as a win against Wales, so they can be expected to come out firing from the first minute. While this may present some opportunities for Wales, chances are it will end up in another cricket score against the men in red.
Wales Six Nations History
Wales have been involved with the Six Nations since it began in the form of the Home Nations in 1883. Since then, they’ve won a total of 39 titles, with 11 of these shared. Six of their titles have come since 2000, in the Six Nations era as we know it, with their most recent win occurring in 2021.
Here’s how the past five Wales Six Nations campaigns have unfolded:
- 2018—Runners up
- 2020—Fifth place
- 2022—Fifth place
To say that Wales have been up and down in the Six Nations recently would be an understatement. Having finished second to last twice in the past four years, while also winning the title twice, is quite an achievement. Wales will be after some consistency this year—but will that mean good results, or poor results?
Wales Six Nations Squad
The biggest change to Wales’ set up ahead of the Six Nations has been off the field, with Warren Gatland reinstated as head coach instead of Wayne Pivac.
Gatland has named an interested 37-man squad, with four new faces for the Wales Six Nations campaign. Teddy Williams, Mason Grady, Rhys Davies and Keiran Williams will all hope to pull on the red jersey for the first time.
The change in leadership at the coaching level has been matched by a change on the field as well, with hooker Ken Owens assuming the captaincy for the first time.
Full Squad List
Rhys Carre, Wyn Jones, Gareth Thomas, Dewi Lake, Ken Owens, Bradley Roberts, Leon Brown, Tomas Francis, Dillon Lewis, Adam Beard, Rhys Davies, Dafydd Jenkins, Alun Wyn Jones, Teddy Williams, Taulupe Faletau, Jac Morgan, Tommy Reffell, Justin Tipuric, Christ Tshiunza and Aaron Wainwright.
Kieran Hardy, Rhys Webb, Tomos Williams, Dan Biggar, Rhys Patchell, Owen Williams, Mason Grady, Joe Hawkins, George North, Nick Tompkins, Keiran Williams, Josh Adams, Alex Cuthbert, Rio Dyer, Leigh Halfpenny, Louis Rees-Zammit and Liam Williams.
Plenty of big names have returned for Wales after injuries late last year, with Wyn Jones, Dewi Lake, Liam Williams and Dan Biggar all back in the squad.
Ross Moriarty, Nicky Smith, Ryan Elias were all unavailable for selection due to injuries, while Louis Rees-Zammit and Dillon Lewis have both been named, despite injury clouds—Rees-Zammit will be out for at least the first two games.
After a head knock concern, Alan Wyn Jones has been cleared to play again.