Captain Hannah Jones believes Wales’ 11-player Gloucester-Hartpury contingent can transfer their fantastic form in the Allianz Premier 15s to the 2023 TikTok Women’s Six Nations.
All nine of Gloucester-Hartpury’s newly announced full-time Wales players are included, along with props Cerys Hope and Abbey Constable, while Jones has been selected as Ioan Cunningham’s new captain.
The Cherry & Whites are currently second in the Premier 15s table, one point behind Exeter Chiefs with a game in hand.
“It is brilliant, we have been playing a really high standard of rugby week in and week out, said Jones.”
“That’s good to see now with these number of games and these number of minutes that we are going to have in international rugby that we are doing well at Gloucester-Hartpury, it is really good.
“We have had six new players from the Celtic Challenge which is brilliant.
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“Bringing Welsh talent through in Wales is a big area of the game and having that development stage in Wales now is just going to be better for us as a squad.”
Six Nations Rugby, the official organising body responsible for the TikTok Women’s Six Nations, broke all fan engagement records in 2022 and highlighted its commitment to giving the women’s game the best possible platform to grow.
The 2023 edition of the Championship stands to build on this progress, with even bigger crowds expected, more international broadcasters covering all the action and unprecedented social and digital promotion for the heroes of the women’s game.
The Welsh Rugby Union doubled the number of players who have earned full-time contracts with the Wales Women’s senior team in 2023.
And Jones admitted that it is giving players the time they need to improve ahead of the 2023 TikTok Women’s Six Nations.
She added: “It is about that winning mentality as well, having 25 players has been brilliant.
“The time has been the biggest thing for me, personally.
“I am not rushing from my other job to come and play international rugby, you wake up in the morning and you are a rugby player.
“You have got time to recover, to have those conversations with coaches, time is a massive thing for us right now.”
Wales will welcome Ireland to Cardiff Arms Park for a fascinating opener ahead of a Round 2 away clash against Scotland.
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Cunningham’s side will then host England ahead of trips to France and Italy.
Wales finished third in last year’s Championship, beating Scotland at home and Ireland away, and Jones believes that the atmosphere at Cardiff Arms Park could be a difference maker during the Championship.
She said: “Having a home base at Cardiff Arms Park has been brilliant, each year we see the crowds get bigger and the audiences on tv are getting bigger.
“It is just nice to see a packed stadium and when we get it full the atmosphere is buzzing.
“It is nice to see people are taking an interest in the game and that they know all the players, that was not the case before, so it is really nice to see how far the game has come.”