North keen to repay Gatland’s faith

George North insists he is keen to reward Warren Gatland for showing trust in him when Wales host Ireland this weekend. [more]

George North

George North insists he is keen to reward Warren Gatland for showing trust in him when Wales host Ireland this weekend.

Under Gatland, winger North has flourished on the international stage, helping himself to 19 tries in 47 Wales appearances.

And the duo teamed up to devastating effect to help the British & Irish Lions claim a 2-1 series victory against Australia in 2013.

However, since then North’s stock has fallen somewhat with Gatland warning his winger about his form, the head coach concerned about a number of defensive mistakes.

Despite this though North started games against England and France last month, only missing the Scotland clash due to concussion, and the 22-year-old is determined to show Gatland that he is right to stick by him.

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"It's never good if the head coach is not happy with you," North told the Western Telegraph. "That's when you start getting dropped.

"I felt that Paris was a step forward for me to where I want to be in a Welsh jersey and hopefully on Saturday I can push forward again and reward his trust.

"They spend a lot of time kicking and I don't think they will change that game plan massively but as much as they are a kicking threat they have got some very good backs and if you switch off for one minute they will take advantage.

"Ireland are ten wins from ten, which is unbelievable. They have got a lot of confidence now, they execute their game plan very well and they are a side that knows what they want to do and where they want to go and everyone has bought into that ethos."

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