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Rugby Union: Hansen relishing date at Racecourse.

Byline: EXCLUSIVE by MARK CURRIE

WALES rugby union coach Steve Hansen says he is looking forward to a week-long training camp in North Wales ahead of his side's international match against Romania at Wrexham's Racecourse Ground in November.

It's a repeat of the only previous Test match played at Wrexham, when Romania were crushed 70-0, but will be the first visit north for Hansen who took over from fellow New Zealander Graham Henry earlier this year.

The Racecourse clash on Friday, November 1 (7.30pm) is one of three home autumn internationals - the others are against Fiji and New Zealand in Cardiff - arranged as preparation for the Six Nations championship.

Speaking exclusively to the Daily Post, Hansen revealed that his international stars would make time in their hectic schedule to conduct coaching clinics for North Wales youngsters and meet as many supporters as possible.

``We have to remember we are preparing for an important Test match but we are also putting together a programme that we hope will involve the public as much as we can,'' he said. ``One of the reasons we are staging the match in Wrexham is in recognition of the support we have received in the past for A internationals staged in the north and to reward those fans who always make the long journey to Cardiff when we play at the Millennium Stadium.

``This rugby team represents the whole of Wales and our visit to North Wales is intended to reflect that. The game against Romania is an important part of our preparations for the Six Nations and I'm pleased to be coming to Wrexham. On top of that the facilities we have been offered are excellent for our needs.''

Ticket arrangements have yet to be confirmed but they are likely to go on sale in a couple of weeks' time. And the Romania match is the first of three major rugby occasions pencilled in for Wrexham.

The Wales A v England A warm-up for the Six Nations match in Cardiff in February will be staged at the Racecourse and another Test, against Canada, is planned for next summer as Hansen prepares his squad for next season's World Cup tournament in Australia.
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Title Annotation:Sport
Publication:Daily Post (Liverpool, England)
Geographic Code:4EUUW
Date:Sep 28, 2002
Words:367
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