EDITORS PLEASE NOTE: EDIT CONTAINS A WHITE FLASH SHOWS: BEPPU, JAPAN (OCTOBER 18, 2019) (REUTERS - ACCESS ALL) 1.
(SOUNDBITE) (English) WALES COACH, WARREN GATLAND, SAYING: "Yeah I think we've been doing that, Michael Cheika (coach for the Australian rugby team) said we were favourite against Australia and we handled that, so, it comes with the territory, it comes with the territory of building and being confident and for us, take out the World Cup warm up games we won eighteen competitive games in a row, we're grand slam champions, we know as we go on in tournaments we get stronger and more confident as a unit, and we just think we're building nicely.
We still feel that we're going under the radar, there's a lot more emphasis and talk about other teams and other games and that suits us but there's a lot of belief and self-confidence within our group." 2.
WHITE FLASH OITA, JAPAN (OCTOBER 18, 2019) (REUTERS - ACCESS ALL) 3.
(SOUNDBITE) (French) FRANCE COACH, JACQUES BRUNEL, SAYING: "We don't want to go home, you know.
We don't want to go back to France.
But for that we'll need to play this match completely, until now we haven't been able to play the full length.
It's not news for anyone, we're meeting the team which is one of the three best ones in the world, and which showed a lot of consistency in the qualifying games, so the challenge is big but we think that if ever we manage to have this consistency during that game we think we have our chances." STORY: Wales rugby players seemed to be in the starting blocks and confident on Friday (October 18) they can beat France in the Rugby World Cup quarter-finals on Sunday (October 20) in Japan.
Wales received a huge boost when centre Jonathan Davies was passed fit to take his place in the side after recovering from a knee injury.
With flyhalf Dan Biggar and winger George North also emerging from injury clouds, coach Warren Gatland was able to name his strongest side, the same starting line-up which took the field in the 29-25 win over Australia in the pool phase.
Centre Davies had been the biggest doubt after sustaining a knee injury in the subsequent match against Fiji, while Biggar took head knocks against the Wallabies and again when facing the Fijians.
France also announced the list of players who will face Wales.
Dupont and Damian Penaud have been passed fit to play on Sunday, a huge boost for coach Jacques Brunel that allowed him to name a full-strength side.
With two teams at full-strength, it should be a high-octane encounter, with either South Africa or Japan awaiting in the semi-finals.
Mindful of how his team started strongly in all three pool games but were then pegged back by Argentina, the United States and Tonga, Brunel stressed the importance of maintaining the intensity for 80 minutes.
France have won only one of the teams' last eight meetings since beating Wales in the semi-finals of the 2011 tournament.