Alun Wyn to lead Dragons
5 Mar 2009
Alun Wyn Jones will captain Wales for next Saturday’s Six Nations match against Italy.
Coach Warren Gatland has made 10 changes with regular skipper Ryan Jones benched together with Gethin Jenkins, Matthew Rees, Mike Phillips, Stephen Jones and Tom Shanklin. Martyn Williams, Leigh Halfpenny and Ian Gough drop out of the squad.
Dwayne Peel and James Hook start at 9 and 10 with Gavin Henson partnering Jamie Roberts in midfield. It will be Henson’s first Test start in 12 months.
“We have made a series of changes with no disrespect to Italy,” Gatland said. “If we are to consistently be one of the top four or five teams in the world we need to back the depth in our squad.
“We have made changes but there are arguments to say we are stronger in certain positions.”
Wales - Lee Byrne (Ospreys); Mark Jones (Scarlets), Jamie Roberts (Blues), Gavin Henson (Ospreys), Shane Williams (Ospreys); James Hook (Ospreys), Dwayne Peel (Sale); John Yapp (Blues), Huw Bennett (Ospreys), Rhys Thomas (Dragons), Luke Charteris (Dragons), Alun Wyn Jones (capt, Ospreys), Jonathan Thomas (Ospreys), Dafydd Jones (Scarlets), Andy Powell (Blues).
Subs: Matthew Rees (Scarlets), Gethin Jenkins (Blues), Bradley Davies (Blues), Ryan Jones (Ospreys), Mike Phillips (Ospreys), Stephen Jones (Scarlets), Tom Shanklin (Blues).