Balanced Basham can shine for Wales


Boss Dean Ryan has backed back row dynamo Taine Basham to push for his first Wales cap this summer after bringing a real balance to his game.

Uncapped Basham, 21, burst onto the scene and was first called up by Wales in November 2019.

The Talywain-born forward has endured a frustrating campaign at times this year after fracturing his foreman in January at Parc y Scarlets.

However, Basham has looked back to his best in recent weeks and now earned another international shot for the summer Tests against Canada and Argentina.

He will compete against regional team-mates Aaron Wainwright and Ross Moriarty plus James Botham, Josh Navidi and Josh Turnbull for Test caps this campaign.

And Ryan attributes that to call to not only his potential but also his all-round ability and the manner in which he has developed his game.

"Taine has been on the radar for over 12 months because his performances last season were outstanding,” said the Director of Dragons Rugby.

"Unfortunately, he lost a bit of momentum with a fractured arm this year but how he's come back has probably given Wayne (Pivac) some confidence that he is still on that trajectory. Some of his entries off the bench in the last few weeks have been outstanding.

"We've got a pretty competitive back row at the Dragons and for Taine to be considered within that group he has had to be at his best.

"Taine came through his development years as a number eight who was very influential with the ball, getting a lot of highlights for things that are easy on the eye," he added.

"He made the shift to seven and some of the things that you don't see so easily become a priority.

“That's a difficult shift for a young man and we have made it a real priority for Taine and he has engaged in that.

"They are key parts that he needs to get right to keep improving and at the same time you still want some of his sparkly bits. He has done that balance really well in the last few games of the season and needs to keep working hard at them."

They are key parts that he needs to get right to keep improving and at the same time you still want some of his sparkly bits...
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