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Highlights on Off The Ball

"Tune in and chill out" | Tipuric on the return of Test rugby

Justin Tipuric is hoping that the Welsh team can give rugby fans around Europe a lift when they f...


"Tune in and chill out" | Tipuric on the return of Test rugby

Justin Tipuric is hoping that the Welsh team can give rugby fans around Europe a lift when they face France in their first international Test since March.

The Welsh flanker and his team-mates have had a long wait in looking to bounce back from the 33-30 defeat to England which ended their faint hopes of winning the Six Nations Championship.

Wales will play a warm-up match at the Stade de France against a France team that now has just a slim chance of winning the tournament which resumes this weekend but Wayne Pivac's side must wait until the following weekend to play their last match of the campaign at home against Scotland.

The squad were back in camp on Tuesday where they must stay together until after the France match to maintain their Covid-19 'bubble' and the Ospreys forward admits that it's all a bit strange.

"Even being up at the hotel, it’s so quiet compared to normal, but it’s kind of the new norm now, which is a little bit weird," said Tipuric.

"It’s all temperature checks and masks on everywhere you go basically. You have got to be two metres apart as best as possible.

"We have our own rooms now whereas probably before you would have shared.

"Backs and forwards are in different changing rooms. Just little things like that which you probably won’t normally imagine going on.

"With the staff we have got here, they have looked into everything. Any question that has been asked, they have got answers.

"The best thing we can do is just concentrate on the game.

"We are in a lucky position to continue doing what we are doing within such a not nice time.

"Hopefully this weekend we will get the Welsh public to tune in and chill out in their homes and put on a good performance for them to watch and keep them entertained."

His comments echo those of Ireland outhalf Jonathan Sexton who feels that the international stars are privileged to be given the chance to entertain the wider public during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Sexton and Ireland go up against France in 11 days time, after their penultimate match of the 2020 Six Nations campaign against Italy this weekend.

Tipuric expects the French to take Wales very seriously in preparation for their home match against the Irish team.

"A Test match is a Test match and we know they are going to come guns blazing and so are we," said the Ospreys forward.

"It’s going to be a tough game. The French are big, strong and they’ve had a good Six Nations, so we know they are going to be up for a game, just like us.

"We want to put a good performance in ready for that Scotland match."

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Irish Rugby Justin Tipuric Six Nations Wales Rugby Welsh Rugby