Wales captain Dan Biggar says he feels “pretty good and confident” after shaking off a shoulder injury for Saturday’s Test series decider against South Africa.
Biggar went off early in the second half of Wales’ historic 13-12 second-Test victory last weekend and was replaced by Gareth Anscombe, but he retains his starting place in Cape Town.
“I managed to get through training this morning, which was the last little hurdle,” fly-half Biggar said.
🏴 Another Saint leading his country in a winner-takes-all Test this weekend.
Good luck, Biggs 👊
— Northampton Saints 😇 (@SaintsRugby) July 14, 2022
“I have been managed well all week and the medics have been brilliant. I feel pretty good and confident in taking to the field on Saturday.
“I knew it was a pretty heavy contact, so it was a case of whether it would settle down in time. Fingers crossed, it looks like it is pretty good.
“There has been a lot of time spent in the physio room, a lot of time recovering, and I think just taking a couple of days to switch off from a tough game and enjoying time to relax, physically and mentally.”
In a second boost for Wales head coach Wayne Pivac, prop Dillon Lewis has recovered from an elbow injury and also features.
One change from the Bloemfontein success – Wales’ first against the Springboks in South Africa – sees wing Josh Adams replace Alex Cuthbert, who has flown home due to a shoulder problem.
Elsewhere, centre George North will become the most-capped back in Wales men’s international rugby history, making his 105th appearance and moving above Stephen Jones.
On North’s landmark feat, Pivac said: “He has been a marvellous player for us, a big player for years and years.
“To come back from the serious injury he has had, I am just pleased that he is out there and he will get to go on the big stage again for us.
“To play 105 Tests is a marvellous achievement. I am looking forward to seeing George out there on Saturday and hope he can have a stormer for us.”
Just 17 weeks after losing at home to Italy and finishing fifth in the Guinness Six Nations Championship, Wales have a chance to sink the Springboks across a three-Test series.
It represents a remarkable turnaround, and Pivac added: “It (series win) would mean the world to the team. They have worked very hard to get into this position.
“For us, it is about getting it right mentally now. It is a massive Test match, we know that, but to be in the race is very pleasing.
“I think there will be pressure on the home team, there is no doubt about that, because going in they were red-hot favourites, weren’t they?
🇿🇦 v🏴 | Hear from Wayne Pivac ahead of the 3rd & final Test this Saturday pic.twitter.com/9FgVzvMuvn
— Welsh Rugby Union 🏉 (@WelshRugbyUnion) July 14, 2022
“To take it to the last game, I think that adds a little bit of spice and a little bit of pressure.
“It is going to be a fair old challenge for us, but one that I think all the soreness and the tiredness of the tour goes out of the window when you get that adrenaline and kick-off comes.
“If we can stay in it and be there at the end, our fitness levels are good, we have got a lot to play for and we would fancy ourselves in the closing stages if the game is tight.
“Nothing has changed in terms of the Springboks having a very powerful scrum, a very good driven lineout, so for us what has to happen is that we have to have a disciplined display, making sure we don’t give away the silly penalties we did in the first Test.
“Yellow cards have plagued us (Wales had five across the first two Tests), and we want to make sure we can tighten that up.”