DRAGONS lock Will Rowlands is certain that Wales have the talent to end France’s pursuit of a Six Nations Grand Slam in Cardiff tonight (kick-off 8pm).

Rowlands is the only Dragons player in the starting XV to face the in-form French, with Ross Moriarty dropping to the bench and Taine Basham out of the matchday squad altogether following the 23-19 defeat to England last time out.

The 30-year-old is proud to be flying the flag for the Rodney Parade region and he’s convinced that Wales can come out top if they replicate their strong second-half showing at Twickenham for the whole 80 minutes tonight.

“The England game was a game of two halves for us,” said Rowlands, pictured.

“We need to focus on putting our best foot forward from the outset and doing what we did in the second half against England in both halves against France. We need to start well.

“They’re a very talented team and they’re probably the form team in the world at the moment so it will be a good test,” he added.

“But, if we’re at our best for 80 minutes, I think we’ve got what it takes to beat any team and there’s no reason why, if we’re on it, we can’t come out on the right side of the scoreline this time.

“It’s about being disciplined in your game-management, but when the opportunities are there you have to be clinical and keep hold of the ball and put the other team under pressure.”

There will be around 10,000 empty seats at the Principality Stadium this evening due to a limited number of French fans making the trip, as well as concerns over the cost of tickets and the travel issues associated with a Friday night game.

But Rowlands is still expecting a fabulous atmosphere in Cardiff and he says the passionate home support can make the difference.

“I’m looking forward to playing under the lights at the Principality Stadium, it’s exciting,” said the former Wasps man.

“That drive in is pretty special when you see everyone who’s come out to support you and the atmosphere inside the stadium is unbelievable.

“It’s definitely the best atmosphere I’ve ever played rugby in. The fact that you can literally see the faces of people in the front row about three metres away from the pitch, the noise is incredible and it makes a massive difference to the Welsh team in there.”

Head coach Wayne Pivac has shown he is not afraid to make big calls in chopping and changing his team, but he’s shown faith in Rowlands of late – this is the fourth consecutive match that he will partner Adam Beard in the second row.

The Dragons man knows, however, that he has to be at his best to keep the jersey.