|Venue: Principality Stadium, Cardiff Date: Saturday, 3 February Kick-off:16:45 GMT
|Protection: Reside on BBC One, S4C, BBC Radio Wales, Radio Cymru & stay textual content on the BBC Sport web site and app. Highlights on Scrum V, Sunday, BBC Two Wales and on-line, 4 February and afterward demand
Dafydd Jenkins says he was left “shaking” by the Warren Gatland telephone name that requested him to be the brand new Wales captain for the Six Nations.
Wales had been searching for a pacesetter after accidents to World Cup co-captains Jac Morgan and Dewi Lake dominated them out of the event.
Gatland turned to the 21-year-old Exeter lock earlier than the Six Nations opener towards Scotland on 3 February.
“It is a dream come true, it is in all probability not sunk in but,” mentioned Jenkins.
“As soon as we have now the primary recreation, and we’re into the matches, it’s going to begin flowing a bit extra. It’s undoubtedly a special occasion for me and my household.”
Jenkins mentioned he was initially sceptical concerning the Gatland telephone name he obtained.
“I used to be very stunned,” he mentioned, “I used to be in Exeter, on the membership, and had a name from a quantity I did not have.
“Gats clearly mentioned who it was. So that you’re simply going together with it.
“I used to be not too certain it was really him or one of many boys enjoying a prank. I spoke to him and I used to be fairly satisfied it was him coming off the decision.
“After I put the telephone down just a few of the boys round me had been asking me who it was and I used to be a bit sceptical.
“Now we have just a few different Welsh boys at Exeter like Joe Hawkins so I in contrast the quantity with him. One of many boys may have gone on my telephone and altered the quantity.”
As soon as authenticity had been established, the enormity of the scenario grew to become clear.
“I used to be undoubtedly shocked,” mentioned Jenkins.
“However once I received the decision I used to be a bit shaken and when he requested me, I needed to say sure. It was a large alternative for me and one to make my household proud.”
Jenkins is from rugby inventory. His father Hywel performed for Swansea, Neath and Llanelli and represented Wales in an uncapped worldwide, whereas his grandfather performed for Aberavon and was in the identical Wales faculties aspect as Sir Gareth Edwards.
Jenkins himself has risen from the ranks from Porthcawl RFC to the Wales captaincy by way of, Hartpury Faculty, Exeter College and Exeter.
“There’s been a great deal of totally different influences,” mentioned Jenkins.
“My mum was a large a part of rising up, taking me in every single place and feeding me!
“Then I went to Hartpury Faculty and that was a large impression on my profession.
“You are coaching like a professional from the age of 16. And Exeter the place they took me to the subsequent stage with the coaches there.
“So I would not say there’s one which stands out, it is simply been lots of intelligent individuals alongside the way in which serving to me.”
Jenkins, who has performed 12 internationals, will develop into the second-youngest Wales captain, after Edwards who was 20 when he led Wales towards Scotland in 1968.
That event was 56 years earlier than Jenkins is because of lead his nation out on the Principality Stadium towards Scotland.
Sam Warburton has additionally now been demoted to 3rd within the checklist of youngest captains and Jenkins says he doesn’t assume he must be related to such names.
“They’re legends of the sport however the factor that made them so particular was they introduced wins as properly,” mentioned Jenkins.
“I do not assume I can examine myself to them with out wins. I am attempting to again up this honour with some wins within the Six Nations and that might be an actual privilege.
“The boys gave me a message straightaway like Jac [Morgan], Dewi [Lake] and Ken [Owens]. Sam Warburton advised me to offer him a name each time I’ve an issue which I thank him for.
“These are legends of the sport. I am attempting to be a sponge and be taught every little thing I can and hopefully it’s going to put me in the very best place.”
Jenkins has gained many admirers by means of his captaincy of Exeter, with the Premiership membership in title competition and progressing to the Investec Champions Cup knockout part.
Exeter director of rugby Rob Baxter gave the lock his first membership captaincy expertise aged 19 and Jenkins is grateful for his affect.
“He is been class,” mentioned Jenkins.
“I had 4 worldwide locks I used to be attempting to compete with and for him to offer me the captaincy once I was younger went a good distance.
“Hopefully I can repay him sooner or later by means of successful trophies at Exeter. It is all the opposite coaches down there too.”
Gatland paid Jenkins a significant praise by saying he expects to see him “within the mould of Alun Wyn Jones”.
So what’s the captaincy fashion of any person so younger?
“I am not an amazing talker by way of the group,” mentioned Jenkins.
“It is simpler mentioned than achieved however I like attempting to steer by instance on the sphere and across the coaching pitch.
“I simply attempt to do my bit on the pitch and hopefully individuals comply with.
“The reality is you do not know when you could have respect, you attempt to lead with actions.
“There isn’t a level telling different individuals what to do once you’re not doing it your self.
“It is just like Jac and Dewi on the World Cup. They led completely by instance on the pitch with the way in which they had been enjoying.
“They had been in all probability the very best two gamers on the park most video games. If I can try this I will be over the moon.”
Jenkins says he will even be taught from World Cup beginning locks Adam Beard and Will Rowlands who he will probably be battling with for beginning spots.
“They’re each class leaders as properly,” mentioned Jenkins.
“I’m nonetheless simply attempting to be taught off them as a lot as I can in addition to the opposite leaders within the staff and it is a staff effort.”