Wales ring the changes ahead of Argentina clash
10 Nov 2016 - 15:25
Wales' head coach Rob Howley has made six changes ahead of his team's meeting with Argentina in Cardiff on Saturday, taking the axe to the side that were crushed 32-8 by the Wallabies last weekend.
Veteran lock Alun Wyn Jones has returned to the starting lineup after missing the Australia game due to the death of his father. He replaces the injured Bradley Davies and will be partnered by Luke Charteris in the second row.
Dan Lydiate, Alex Cuthbert and injured scrumhalf Rhys Webb are all out of the 23, while Sam Warburton returns at blindside flanker, although loosehead prop Gethin Jenkins retains the captain's armband.
"With Sam returning, we have spoken to him and we feel it's best for him to focus purely on his performance and role on Saturday, leaving the captaincy with Gethin," Howley said.
"We've made a number of changes, some of which are selection based and injury enforced but we are also able to select from a number of players returning from injury as well.
Gareth Davies has replaced the injured Webb at scrum-half, and Howley backed the Scarlets man to slot in seamlessly.
"It's a blow to lose Rhys, but Gareth is an excellent scrumhalf as he has shown on many occasions in the No.9 jersey and he will see it as a great opportunity," the coach added.
George North has been moved to the right wing in place of Cuthbert, with Liam Williams in on the left wing. Scott Williams is at inside centre, with Jamie Roberts dropping to the bench.
Tighthead prop Samson Lee has also been named among the substitutes, losing his place to Tomas Francis.
15-Leigh Halfpenny, 14-George North, 13-Jonathan Davies, 12-Scott Williams, 11-Liam Williams, 10-Dan Biggar, 9-Gareth Davies; 8-Ross Moriarty, 7-Justin Tipuric, 6-Sam Warburton, 5-Alun Wyn Jones, 4-Luke Charteris, 3-Tomas Francis, 2-Ken Owens, 1-Gethin Jenkins (Captain)
Replacements: 16-Scott Baldwin, 17-Nicky Smith, 18-Samson Lee, 19-Cory Hill, 20-James King, 21-Lloyd Williams, 22-Gareth Anscombe, 23-Jamie Roberts