OITA, 9 Sep - Wales scrum-half Gareth Davies played his cards right when he skipped his usual post-season trip to Las Vegas. 

The Scarlets player's decision to stay at home in the run-up to the World Cup has paid off, with head coach Warren Gatland effusive in his praise for the scrum-half's form and fitness.

"I had a quiet summer to be honest, didn't do what I normally do, so there were no trips to Vegas or anything like that," Davies said.

"I knew the camps we had lined up in Switzerland and Turkey were going to be tough. I just kept my head down and when we came into camp, the hard work really started. It was a really tough couple of months but we are all feeling good and fit and aim to keep that going."

The fruits of his labour were evident when Davies intercepted and raced 60 metres for a crucial try in Wales's 29-25 victory against Australia in their most recent Pool D game, above.

It was his sixth try in seven World Cup appearances, having scored five from five in 2015, including an equally crucial score in the comeback victory against England at Twickenham.

"It's an all right record, isn't it," the 29-year-old said. "I'll have to try to get two this week. I like to think my form away from the World Cup is pretty good.

"But the World Cup is pretty special. It's the best tournament in the world, the biggest stage to play on. As players, as soon as this one has finished, we start looking forward to the next one.

"We have been building towards it for 18 months and it's great that we have got off to a good start. We're in a good place, winning two from two."

In Wednesday's game at Oita Stadium, where Wales will be looking to clinch a place in the quarter-finals, Fiji will have to keep close tabs on Davies, who has been dubbed the Interception King in some quarters.

"With Shaun Edwards (the Wales defence coach) we do a lot of work on our general line speed. If I find myself in the right place at the right time, I'm pretty quick and I get off the line pretty fast and sometimes the ball is there to take.

"Against Australia, I was lucky and picked the right moment, but I can't do it too much as I'd expose too much space elsewhere. I have to be careful at times.

"Opposing teams are more aware of me but I might not come as hard next time and might sit in the defensive line and try to make some positive tackles. I might not get one intercept for another couple of games but I will keep looking for them."

Before the game against the Wallabies, Gatland told Davies he would score.

"He's showing probably that experience and maturity now," the Wales coach said. "I know that we have always had some slight criticism in the past, just on his conditioning, but I can tell you that he came into these pre-Rugby World Cup camps having done a lot of work. He was in great physical shape.

"We give him a free licence defensively and he's outstanding at timing and coming off the line, from about third defender, putting those players under pressure. We have seen that anticipation in the past, in terms of getting intercepts."

RNS ig/sg/mj/co