|2019 Rugby World Cup|
|Venue: Tokyo Stadium, Tokyo Date: Sun, 29 September Kick-off: 11:15 BST|
|Coverage: Full commentary on every Wales game across BBC Radio Wales and Radio Cymru, BBC Radio 5 Live and Radio 5 Live Sports Extra, plus text updates on the BBC Sport website and app.|
Wales lock Jake Ball believes World Rugby were correct to ban Australia wing Reece Hodge for three matches for a dangerous tackle against Fiji.
Hodge will miss the World Cup Pool D game against Wales in Tokyo on Sunday for the challenge on flanker Peceli Yato as the Wallabies beat Fiji.
Hodge was not penalised at the time, but a disciplinary panel later decided he deserved a red card.
“I think it probably was a red card offence,” said Ball.
The longer disciplinary verdict said Hodge claimed he had no effective knowledge of World Rugby’s framework for dealing with high tackles and had not been trained with them in mind.
“It’s difficult, but looking at that hit I think it was probably the right decision… you can’t really get away with it now with no arms,” said Ball.
“Any contact with the head and that’s the way things are going to go.
“As a player now, all you can do is try and avoid that situation.
“Sometimes it’s not easy. Things happen very quickly in the game and you just have to do what you can.”
Ball is set to line up in the Wales second-row against the Wallabies after he was named official man-of-the-match against Georgia.
“I have been desperate to play and it’s been well documented I have had a few injuries over the last few years and it’s been a case of trying to stay fit and this period has been great for me,” he said.
“I am just trying to play as good a rugby as possible.
“All the training that we have done, I have missed many sessions and I feel in a good place and been given the confidence to go out there and do what I do.”
Ball knows Australia will pose a more serious threat, but hopes Wales can benefit from memories of victory over the Wallabies in Cardiff last November.
“We can take a little bit from the win,” said Ball.
“It’s a massive game for us and that’s what all those players are thriving on.
“Australia are a dangerous team and play a lot of running rugby and attacking threats across the board, but also have a strong set-piece.”
Owens trains after knee worry
Wales forwards coach Robin McBryde confirmed hooker Ken Owens played a full part in training on Thursday after picking up a knee injury against Georgia.
Centre Hadleigh Parkes played some part in the session after suffering a small fracture in his hand.
Newly-called up lock Bradley Davies took part in scrummaging in his first session since arriving in Japan earlier this week, while fellow Ospreys second-row Adam Beard will miss the Wallabies match after having his appendix removed.
Wales name their team on Friday with strong competition in the back-row as Ross Moriarty looks to break into the starting line-up after Aaron Wainwright, Josh Navidi and Justin Tipuric began the win against Georgia.
“There is a good competiveness there and healthy for us and there will definitely be some discussion points in the starting side,” said McBryde.
“Ross has trained well this morning as did James Davies and a handful of others.
“Everybody realises what is at stake to take part in a World Cup match and that gives training an extra edge.”
|Wales World Cup fixtures & results – Pool D|
|Mon, 23 Sept: Wales 43-14 Georgia|
|Sun, 29 Sept: Wales v Australia, Toyota Stadium, Tokyo (08:45 BST)|
|Wed, 9 Oct: Wales v Fiji, Oita Stadium, Oita (10:45 BST)|
|Sun, 13 Oct: Wales v Uruguay, Kumamoto Prefectural Athletic Stadium, Kumamoto City (09:15 BST)|
French referee Romain Poite takes charge of the game, an official Wales had difficulty with at the scrum in the warm-up 22-17 defeat by Ireland in Cardiff in August.
McBryde said he spoke to Poite and World Rugby referees boss Alain Rolland in the wake of that game.
“We felt with some decisions we needed more explanations and we have had that,” said the ex-Wales hooker.
“After the game against Georgia as well the discussions have continued, sending footage back and forth with World Rugby, we can get a clear picture.
“At the moment we are in a very positive place and happy with the way we are scrummaging.
“Hopefully Romain will see some things differently in this game against Australia.”
Pool D was shaken up by Uruguay’s shock 30-27 win over Fiji on Wednesday with Wales still to play both opponents.
“It does not change our mindset,” said McBryde.
“We are not looking further than the next game and if we can beat Australia it puts us in a healthy place.
“The Fiji game is going to be big regardless of what has gone on.”
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All pictures via Huw Evans Images.