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The Welsh coach Mike Ruddock's attempt to inspire his national side to fresh heights took on a whole new meaning yesterday when he included the tallest player in the country in a 29-man squad for the forthcoming internationals against South Africa, New Zealand, Romania and Japan.
At 6ft 9in, the uncapped Newport Gwent Dragons lock Luke Charter is the tallest Welsh forward to emerge since Derwyn Jones in the mid-1990s and Ruddock acknowledged yesterday they have been grooming the 21-year-old for Test rugby for some time.
"Luke's selection was part of our planning before the summer tour," said Ruddock, who has also included the former Celtic Warriors back-row forward Ryan Jones, now playing for the Neath-Swansea Ospreys.