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Roberts inspired by All Blacks
21 November 2012 15:54pm
Roberts is braced for the All Blacks
Jamie Roberts believes the prospect of taking on world champions New Zealand will inspire wounded Wales.
But Roberts, who starts at the Millennium Stadium on Saturday, believes that challenge can lift Wales on the back of their recent disappointments against Argentina and Samoa.
"New Zealand is a game we need now. To play against the best side in the world and probably the best team ever to have played the game is such a motivation," said Roberts.
"The chance to take on the All Blacks is a magical and unique experience.
"We have to play rugby against this New Zealand side. We can't afford to tighten up our game and be robotic in our approach.
"We need to match these guys physically and defend hard as a unit. But we also need to go out and play with flair and produce a brand of rugby which we know can play.
"The Welsh teams in the past who have come close to defeating the All Blacks at the Millennium Stadium have done this."
Roberts is reunited with Grand Slam midfield partner Jonathan Davies, who has shaken off a groin complaint and is among five changes from the side beaten by Samoa.
And the 2009 Lions Man of the Series, among the most senior players in the team, is ready to lead from the front to turn Welsh fortunes around.
"It's frustrating because of the high standards we have set ourselves over the last 12 months.
"With what we have achieved we have sort of set a benchmark with what we have achieved and created an expectation of our performance.
"We have come under that significantly in the last two weeks and it has been hugely frustrating.
"Nobody is hurting more than the players.
"Collectively we did not play very good rugby though we should take nothing away from the opposition because Argentina and Samoa played smart and attritional rugby and deserved to win.
"Now we have work hard and it's hugely important we make a statement."
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