Lee Byrne has warned France that Wales will not allow the Grand Slam to slip from their grasp in the RBS 6 Nations-deciding clash at the Millennium Stadium.
Wales full-back Byrne, ever-present in Wales’ line-up and one of the players of the tournament, insists the Welsh team have come too far under coach Warren Gatland to let France spoil the party in Cardiff this weekend.
France need to beat Wales by 20 clear points to wrestle away the championship trophy but Wales’ bid to make the Millennium Stadium a feared place for visiting teams is at the forefront of Gatland and his players’ minds.
“All these games will mean nothing now if we don’t win at the weekend,” said 18-times capped Byrne, who has played every minute of Wales’ four wins over England, Scotland, Italy and Ireland.
“The Grand Slam is there for us and that is what we are going out to achieve.
“We are going out to win, especially in Cardiff. We don’t want to lose any home games and we want to make the Millennium Stadium a fortress.
“We want to win the Grand Slam and that’s what we are going to do.
“The way the boys are playing at the moment there is so much confidence in the team. I think we would be a match for anyone on our day at the moment.”
The 27-year-old Osprey not only possesses a strong left boot, he is also cool under the high ball, tackles well and has showed an attacking edge to his game.
And he is confident, not only in his team’s performance but also in the way he has shown up during the last six weeks.
“I’m happy with the way it’s gone for me at the moment, but I know there is one final hurdle to go for me and that’s the most important one really.
Byrne believes that Gatland’s approach to the championship especially with regard game preparation and training has been a big factor in Wales finishing stronger than all four opponents so far.
“Warren said he would have been happy with third in the championship but it’s all in our own hands now. If we do come off with the Grand Slam on Saturday it will be a huge achievement for the coaches and the players.
“When we are on the training field we know we won’t be on there for more than 40 minutes and everything is so intense. There’s no talking, no stop-start, we are on there and then off.
“Warren’s training methods are about short, sharp sessions and its working.
“These training methods mean that it is easier when it comes to playing a game. Everyone is out on their feet at the end of a game and shattered, and when Warren sees us like that it’s what he likes to see.
“Now we are trying that extra bit harder than other teams and we are probably the fittest we have ever been.”