Powell never doubted 6Nations return

Lions tourist Andy Powell says he never doubted his Six Nations future. [more]

Powell never doubted 6Nations return

Lions tourist Andy Powell says he never doubted his Six Nations future.

The 2010 tournament ended in disappointment for Powell who was omitted from the Welsh camp following the infamous ‘Buggygate’ saga after Wales’ narrow win over Scotland.

Powell had been taking part in just his second Six Nations following his international debut in November 2008.

There was plenty of media speculation at the time that Powell would never feature for his country in Europe’s premier tournament again but the man himself remained confident that he hadn’t played his last Six Nations fixture.

"I always knew I could get back and play for Wales in the Six Nations again,” said Powell, who toured South Africa with the Lions in the summer of 2009.

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"I just had to get my head straight and start playing at the level I know I'm capable of.

"I'm thoroughly enjoying my time with Wasps and playing every week has been brilliant. You can be the fittest man on the track but if you're not playing, you're not match fit.

"Hopefully I'll be at Wasps next year. It's all on the table and I think I'm signing this week.

"Playing in England is definitely a risk in terms of Wales selection but it puts pressure on me to play well. If I'm playing well it makes my job a lot easier and the selectors' more difficult."

Powell starts at No8 against England at the Millennium Stadium tomorrow night having been preferred to former skipper Ryan Jones and Jonathan Thomas.

Warren Gatland has picked Powell alongside youngsters Dan Lydiate and Sam Warburton, while England have selected James Haskell, Nick Easter and debutant Tom Wood in their starting back row.

Powell admits he has been impressed with what he’s seen so far this term from Wood but he insists the 24-year-old will face a baptism of fire in Cardiff.

"Tom is a good all-rounder and has a clear head, but Friday night will be different to anything he's ever experienced. We'll get stuck into him just as we would with any player," added Powell.

"Wood has been lucky to be part of a Northampton pack that has been going forward but hopefully we'll put England on the back foot and we'll see how he copes then."

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