by Jack Cook
WALES face France in an international friendly and 19 years old Louis Rees-Zammit is on the bench, but many say he should be starting.
The Welsh wonder-kid has been grabbing the headlines ahead of Wales’ trip to Paris as many fans and pundits believe the youngster should be making his debut.
Rees-Zammit first broke onto the scene playing for the Gloucester first team in 2019. Since then he has been putting in unbelievable performances and making his presence known to Wales’ coach Wayne Pivac.
Pivac first called up Rees-Zammit to the Wales squad for the 2020 Six Nations but he still hasn’t made his senior debut for Wales.
𝗧𝗘𝗔𝗠 𝗡𝗘𝗪𝗦 ⫶ Wayne Pivac names first Wales team in seven months: https://t.co/4ncYr46jwR
𝟭𝟰𝟴 ⫶ Alun Wyn Jones to equal world record for international appearances this Saturday in Paris.
👥 ⫶ Dau gap newydd ar y fainc: Sam Parry, Louis Rees-Zammit
— Welsh Rugby Union 🏉 (@WelshRugbyUnion) October 22, 2020
I’ve put together five reasons why I believe that Louis Rees-Zammit should be starting on Saturday night against Les Bleus.
1) In form
Louis Rees-Zammit is arguably one of the most inform players for Wales at the moment, including been awarded the English Premiership’s young player of the year.
He is right up there with the very best that Wales has to offer and on par with players like George North, who starts in front of him and whois arguably not in his best form of his career. It’s a real shame that the Gloucester player isn’t starting.
2) Lightning speed
Louis Rees-Zammit possesses some unbelievable attributes but his speed is what gets people talking. In a recent interview with the Welsh Rugby Union’s official website, he says his speed is just down to genetics and he hasn’t received any sprint training.
“It’s all about genetics, I guess. My dad is really fast, and I get my pace from him. I’d never done any sprint training before this year and I’ve never done athletics.”
This season he has hit speed as high as 36.34km/h or 10.1 metres a second. This is an unbelievable stat as the youngster is still growing and learning.
3) Try scoring ability
Louis Rees-Zammit’s try scoring ability is up there with the best in the world. Before being called up to the Gloucester first team he scored 26 tries for Gloucester Academy and also five for Wales’s under 18.
When being called up to the Gloucester first team he became Gloucester’s youngest ever premiership player. He also became Gloucester’s youngers ever player to score a hat trick of tries against Northampton. In the same month, he was named Premiership player of the month in December 2019.
After scoring 12 tries in 15 matches in the 2019/2020 seasons there is no wonder why Welsh fans are calling for his debut.
Louis Rees-Zammit can play in several different positions. He mainly plays on the Wing, which is the positions he is most likely to feature for Wales, but he also can play Full back. This is a position he’s played several times for Gloucester this season.
He could follow the likes of Leigh Halfpenny who starts at 15 against France and Scarlets’s Liam Williams who can play the two positions.
This could be key for Rees-Zammit for his chances in the future as Wales tend to like players who are versatile as is proven with the players listed above.
5) The perfect game to get started
Since his call up to the Six Nations squad, he has yet to feature in any game for Wales. I believe that the game on Saturday night in Paris would be the perfect game for Wayne Pivac to hand Louis Rees-Zammit his debut.
As the game is an international friendly to warm up the sides for the upcoming conclusion of the postponed Six Nations, Wales really have nothing to lose with a few experiments. There wouldn’t be much pressure on the shoulders of the 19 year old and if he shows his class, he could be within a shout for his first competitive game in the Six Nations.