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George North believes it is time for Wales for stop making excuses and start beating the Southern Hemisphere nations after another narrow loss to Australia on Saturday.
The clash against the Wallabies was widely seen as the best chance that Warren Gatland’s men had of beating one of the traditional big three this autumn but despite a spirited performance in front of the vibrant Millennium Stadium crowd, they eventually went down 30-26.
Wales have won the Six Nations in each of the last two years, but their inability to win big matches has left a cloud over the camp, especially with the next World Cup now less than two years away.
Sam Warburton and co finished fourth at the last tournament in 2011 and despite their poor results against Australia, South Africa and New Zealand, they are still widely expected to carry Europe’s biggest threat.
They will certainly have their work cut out if they are to make an impact though, with both the Wallabies and England in their pool while they could also have to take on the Springboks in the quarter-finals.
Saturday’s defeat means it is full five years since Wales have won against one of the big southern hemisphere nations and North feels that despite their improving performances, it is time to stop making excuses.
“From our point of view I think we’ve been here a few too many times,” he told BBC 2. “We put up a good fight today but we’ve gone down in the end.
“The boys are disappointed. It was a roller-coaster ride for us. We are competing better now and pushed them to the end.”