All Blacks at sell-out Cardiff stadium the 'ultimate drug', says Wales' Anscombe

Taking on New Zealand at a packed Principality Stadium with 74,000 baying fans under a closed roof in the heart of Cardiff has been likened to the ultimate drug by Wales fly-half Gareth Anscombe.

The atmosphere becomes cauldron-like as choirs march around the sides of the pitch booming out Welsh hymns and Tom Jones' classic 'Delilah' before kick-off and pyrotechnics greeting the players as they enter the field.

"International rugby at a sold-out Principality is a bit like a drug and once you've had a taste of it it is the ultimate really," said Anscombe, born and raised in New Zealand but with a Welsh mother.

"It is certainly what lights my fires. There is no bigger occasion really than the All Blacks in Cardiff.

"It is really special, it's great that we've got the roof closed, it adds to the atmosphere... it's just the best place in the world."

The roof closed makes for an even playing field for both teams, with forecast inclement weather no longer a factor.

"Both teams want to play quick," said Anscombe. "I think both teams want to enjoy playing with the ball and with the stadium we've got, it's the best in the world, so why not use the roof?

"It's great for the spectacle. We expect it to be a fast game... It is one I am really looking forward to, am feeling really good and just hoping I can do my role for the team."

New Zealand named Jordie Barrett at inside centre for Saturday's game, with his brothers Beauden and Scott also in the starting All Blacks XV at full-back and lock, and the versatile back was itching for a second run-out in the Welsh capital.

"It was unbelievable last year, closed roof and dry ball and you feel like the crowd's on top of you," Barrett said.

"It's an awesome atmosphere when they're singing. Last year they weren't singing a whole lot so hopefully we don't allow them to continue singing for too long in this game because we know how much it means to the Welsh players on the field.

"It's such an unbelievable theatre to be part of."

- Indifferent year -

Anscombe, whose first touch in last year's 54-16 drubbing in Cardiff by the Kiwis was a pass intercepted by one-time age-group rival Beauden Barrett for a try, added: "Clearly with my history and background they add a little extra spice to the game – I've got a few good mates in the team.

"It's a really good opportunity for us and myself to go out there and just have some fun and see how we go. The All Blacks are coming off an indifferent year, I suppose, by their standards but they are still one of the best teams in the world."

Wales have not beaten New Zealand since 1953 and are on a 32-match losing streak to the All Blacks.

But cracks have shown in the New Zealand armour this year. The All Blacks lost to Ireland twice in a historic home series defeat and also at home to Argentina for the first time.

Despite also losing to South Africa, the All Blacks still went on to claim the Rugby Championship, something not lost on Wales skipper Justin Tipuric.

"It's never a good time to play the All Blacks, let's be honest. We have got to make sure we put our best foot forward," said Tipuric.

"It is going to be a tough physical game and it will be brutal in areas. We know what they are going to bring."

The Ospreys flanker added: "You can't switch off, otherwise they take advantage of it. In the past we started well against them and then they pull away in the last 20 minutes.

"The big thing is whether we can stick it for the full 80 minutes."

Jordie Barrett insisted that not too much was being read into last year's thrashing.

"We're under no illusion, things aren't going to be as easy as last time, it'll be a massive challenge."

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