Wales v South Africa, Millennium Stadium, June 5
Thomas desperate for victory
June 4, 2010

Jonathan Thomas is in bullish mood prior to Saturday's showdown with South Africa in Cardiff, insisting that Wales have an opportunity to end a losing run against the Springboks dating back to 1999.

Wales have only tasted victory over their visitors once, making the weakened Boks a prime target this weekend. Thomas, who won the Magners League with the Ospreys last weekend, insists that Wales are operating with a healthy mixture of respect and confidence heading into the tie.

Peter De Villiers has selected a South Africa side boasting four overseas stars and a number of youngsters and while Wales themselves are without talismanic duo Gethin Jenkins and Shane Williams, the ball seems to be in their court.

"There is never a weak South Africa side, but a player like Schalk Burger is up there with the best in the world, so his absence and that of others is bound to have an effect," Thomas said. "They are renowned for their strength in depth and their Super 14 teams have done well this year, but this is definitely a big opportunity for us.

"There is no psychological fear for us. Most of the players in our squad are experienced now and know what to expect from a game with South Africa. We have British and Irish Lions in our squad, players who featured in a Test victory over the Springboks only a year ago, so there isn't a mental issue to overcome. That isn't to say we do not respect them."


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