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Bevan 'true to himself' for chasing Wales dream

Ellis Bevan was awarded his first cap
Ellis Bevan was awarded his first cap by Wales head coach Warren Gatland [Huw Evans Picture Agency]

Scrum-half Ellis Bevan says he was “true to himself” by following his rugby dream of playing for Wales.

The Solihull-born 24-year-old won his first cap for the land of his father as Wales lost 41-13 to South Africa at Twickenham on Saturday.

Bevan’s dad is from Swansea and he was identified through the Welsh Rugby Union's (WRU) exiles programme.

The former Wales Under-20s scrum-half impressed while playing for Cardiff Met and was picked up by Cardiff before making his Test debut.

"It has always been Wales, it is not something that has been a question for me," said Bevan.

Bevan, who was one of four debutants against the Springboks, sang "Stand by Me" in the traditional post-match ritual of new caps performing in front of the squad.

Battling de Klerk

Ellis Bevan and Faf de Klerk
Ellis Bevan and Faf de Klerk prepare for a South Africa scrum [Huw Evans Picture Agency]

Bevan impressed when making his debut against South Africa and was denied a first-half try after a final pass went astray.

"What an occasion to have my first cap against the current world champions," said Bevan.

"I have watched the Springboks for years so you know what's coming.

"We had a game plan and stuck to it and in the first 50 minutes we executed that reasonably well.

"There will be missed opportunities we can look back on but we can be proud of enforcing our own plan and being just one point down at half-time.

"We are never going to be pleased with losing but we can be positive with some of the things we showed out there."

Bevan was not overawed in his duel with Springboks scrum-half Faf de Klerk.

"It was something I was looking forward to and wanted to embrace playing against a double World Cup winner on my debut," said Bevan.

"If I want to get to where he is, I have to come up against the best.

"He told me I had a good game and said keep going. He was kind enough to give me his shirt and we had a photo in the changing room.

"So he is a good guy on and off the field."

Scrum-half battle

Wales gave new caps to quartet Jacob Beetham, Ellis Bevan, James Ratti and Eddie James against South Africa
Wales gave new caps to quartet Jacob Beetham, Ellis Bevan, James Ratti and Eddie James against South Africa at Twickenham [Huw Evans Picture Agency]

He was just Wales' fourth new scrum-half cap in the last decade and the first since Kieran Hardy in 2020.

With Tomos Williams injured, Bevan, Hardy and Gareth Davies are set to be the three scrum-halves in Wales' touring squad for Australia named on Monday with the party flying to Sydney on Wednesday.

"I will hopefully get on to the plane," said Bevan.

"There are three of us in the squad and the other two guys are quality scrum-halves.

"If I can have a career half as good as Gareth and Kieran, I will be doing all right."

Bevan also admitted he has been helped by his former Cardiff scrum-half rivals Lloyd Williams and Tomos Williams.

"I went in there to Cardiff as a 20-year-old boy still at university," said Bevan.

"I had Tomos and Lloyd to learn off and I could not have asked for better people."