Wales hooker Huw Bennett says he is relishing his battle with Matthew Rees for the number two jersey ahead of the RBS 6 Nations.
Rees captained Wales during last year's tournament and had looked set to lead his country to the World Cup in New Zealand, only for a neck injury to rule him out of contention. That left Bennett as coach Warren Gatland's first choice, and he took his chance with both hands as Wales went on their memorable march to the semi-finals.
"Myself, Ken (Owens) and Matthew have a healthy rivalry, we are good friends and they are both great players," said Bennett, who held on to the jersey for the December meeting with Australia.
"There is no doubting Matthew is one of the leaders in this squad and respected by everyone.
"His absence meant I got my chance at the World Cup, Ken also made his international debut and Lloyd Burns played a vital role as well. I was given the starting berth and it was up to me to prove I deserved it.
"I welcomed the challenge and the opportunity, and I think I did okay. The team certainly reached the heights in terms of getting through to that semi-final but we also feel we have unfinished business and we have more to offer.
"Now with Matthew back in the squad we are pushing each other and neither of us want to give up that starting jersey."
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