Mark Taylor: Wales U20s blessed with midfield talent

Campaign Series: Newport Gwent Dragons versus Connacht
PINCERED Dragon Jack Dixon (4803850) Newport Gwent Dragons versus Connacht PINCERED Dragon Jack Dixon (4803850)

TEAM manager Mark Taylor expects the Wales Under-20s coaching team to suffer some midfield selection headaches at the Junior World Championship, writes Chris Kirwan.

It is likely that captain Steffan Hughes and Newport Gwent Dragons regular Jack Dixon will be the first-choice pairing for next month's tournament in New Zealand but there are other options.

Tyler Morgan showed for the Dragons at the end of the RaboDirect Pro12 season that he is a matchwinner from outside centre while RGC's Harri Evans had a pretty solid Six Nations campaign and started against Scotland in last week's warm-up win.

Former centre Taylor, who won 52 caps and scored the first try at the Millennium Stadium in the 1999 win against South Africa, is excited by the options available.

He said: "Steff is our captain and stepped up to the mark last year, covering himself in glory when we suffered a big injury blow to Cory Allen. He was a natural choice as a leader.

"Jack is a regular starter for the Dragons and we know all about his qualities while Harri did a great job against Scotland and we have the versatility of Tyler (who has featured on the wing for the Under-20s).

"It's an embarrassment of riches and Byron (Hayward, head coach) has a selection headache, but a nice one. We have got to get the combinations right and get the best out of some exciting players."

Blaenavon-born Taylor is also pleased that the future looks bright at Rodney Parade with the young midfield pair and teenage wing/full-back Hallam Amos set to feature prominently next season.

"As someone from Gwent it is pleasing to see so many young backs coming through," said Taylor. "They are players that can be key to the future of the Dragons."

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