WALES boss Jayne Ludlow is excited by the challenge of going up against England after being drawn with the Lionesses in the qualifying for the 2019 World Cup.

The Welsh women are joined in Group One by the English, Russia, Bosnia & Herzegovina and Kazakhstan.

The seven European qualifying group winners progress automatically with four best runners-up entering a two-round play-off for the final berth.

The group stages run from September for a year with 24 teams in total taking part in the competition in France in June 2019.

England, who finished third at the World Cup in Canada two years ago, are top seeds and clear favourites to make it through to the finals.

The Lionesses beat Wales home and away in the qualifying for the 2015 finals but Ludlow is relishing the chance of seeing her side up against some quality opposition.

"We finished third in our last qualifying group and this is the next stepping stone for us," said Ludlow. "They're all going to be challenges in different ways. It's a great opportunity for us to develop our game."

"There's a lot of travelling time and our group gets to spend more time together. It's something to look forward to."

Full draw

Group 1: England, Russia, Wales, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Kazakhstan.

Group 2: Switzerland, Scotland, Poland, Belarus, Albania.

Group 3: Norway, Netherlands, Republic of Ireland, Slovakia, Northern Ireland.

Group 4: Sweden, Denmark, Ukraine, Hungary, Croatia.

Group 5: Germany, Iceland, Czech Republic, Slovenia, Faroe Islands.

Group 6: Italy, Belgium, Romania, Portugal, Moldova.

Group 7: Spain, Austria, Finland, Serbia, Israel.