The final time Wales followers noticed Hardy begin a sport at Principality Stadium was when he needed to limp away from the motion throughout the late phases of the Six Nations victory over England in February.
The Scarlets scrum-half had already surged over for one in all Wales’ 4 tries as they beat the previous enemy, however then tweaked a hamstring earlier than the top of the 40-24 triumph that delivered the Triple Crown.
It meant he missed the victory over Italy and defeat to France, however the title winner on his Six Nations debut season will likely be again on the house of Welsh rugby on Saturday to face Argentina in a match that’s dwell on S4C.
“It’s good to be again,” says the 25-year-old, who will earn his fifth cap towards the Pumas in a match more likely to pose way more of a problem for Wales than the one-sided romp towards Canada final week.
“The final time I began right here it ended with an damage and I couldn’t play an even bigger half ultimately of the Six Nations. It’s nice to be again and to be given the chance to put on the 9 shirt this weekend.”
When Hardy left the sphere towards England 4 months in the past, it opened the door to Gareth Davies to return off the bench and his Scarlets teammate did sufficient in the remainder of that event to seal a spot within the British & Irish Lions squad for this summer time’s tour of South Africa.
That has left Hardy – who’s on the Lions’ stand-by checklist – to battle it out with Cardiff Blues’ Tomos Williams for the No.9 shirt whereas Davies is away. Lloyd Williams can also be within the combine.
Williams began within the 68-12 thrashing of Canada. Hardy now will get his alternative towards Argentina and says: “It’s nice to have competitors and it undoubtedly makes us each higher gamers.
“Lloyd has are available as effectively and even when I solely have a particular period of time on the sphere I’ll do the whole lot potential to ensure my efficiency is appropriate and the group’s efficiency comes by way of my vitality on the sphere.”
Argentina have included most of their European-based stars of their present squad and with an attention grabbing 25-15 victory over New Zealand achieved within the Rugby Championship as just lately as final November, they need to present a stern check for Wales coach Wayne Pivac and his facet.
Though the Pumas solely beat Romania 24-17 in Bucharest final week, Hardy is anticipating a far harder examination than towards the outclassed Canadians.
“It is going to undoubtedly be a unique problem to final weekend and an actual Check match,” he says.
“They’re a really bodily group who have gotten some good leads to the final couple of months. They’ll be fairly pleased with that however the boys are relishing the problem.
“They’ll be bodily and have a superb kicking sport. It is going to be an enormous alternative for us, significantly within the counter-attack, and we’ve acquired to match them bodily as effectively.’
In additional direct confrontation to Hardy – if he comes off the bench – will likely be a participant he has seen as close-quarters. Dragons scrum-half Gonzalo Bertranou pitched up at Rodney Parade in February and rapidly established himself as a critical rival to the skilled Rhodri Williams.
“He’s executed fairly effectively since he’s come into the Dragons,” says Hardy.
“He fits the best way Argentina wish to play, significantly with him and Nicolas Sanchez they usually’ll try to deliver velocity to the sport.
“We should be ready for whoever performs however hopefully we are able to handle the sport higher than they’ll.”
Sanchez begins at fly-half, however Pumas coach Mario Ledesma – an previous warrior from the scary Pumas packs of the previous – has made six adjustments from the group that beat Romania.
Bertranou begins among the many replacements with Tomas Cubelli carrying No.9, whereas Ledesma says: “We had 22 possibilities towards Romania of which we transformed solely 4. That’s one thing fairly essential and the probabilities towards Wales will likely be far fewer than that.
“Past the problem posed by the Wales ahead pack, I feel the secret’s how the Welsh center pair play, or how we allow them to play.”
Watch unique dwell protection of Argentina v Wales on S4C, from 12.30pm on Saturday, kick off 1.00pm. English commentary out there.
Catrin Heledd will host protection alongside Wales fly-halves Rhys Patchell and Elinor Snowsill and commentator Cennydd Davies. Eddie Butler and Wales flanker Ellis Jenkins will present English language commentary.