Gavin Henson has been named at centre for Wales’ match-up against the Barbarians this Saturday.
It’s been two years since Henson last played for the Dragons, but coach Warren Gatland maintains he still has something to offer. It’s an interesting selection in the context of the World Cup, and if Henson can prove he has what it takes, he may very well feature in the Pool D game against South Africa on 11 September in Wellington.
‘We need depth and hopefully Gavin does well and he puts some pressure on the established guys,’ Gatland said. ‘It’s a psychological challenge that we need to be prepared for, there is a lot at stake for all of us and for the players in particular in terms of us assessing their character and them booking their places on that plane for the Rugby World Cup.’
Sam Warburton will captain the team while Stephen Jones will earn his 100th Test cap. Saturday’s match is a full cap international.
Wales – 15 Morgan Stoddart; 14 George North, 13 Jonathan Davies, 12 Gavin Henson, 11 Aled Brew; 10 Stephen Jones, 9 Mike Phillips; 8 Toby Faletau, 7 Sam Warburton (c), 6 Dan Lydiate; 5 Luke Charteris, 4 Ryan Jones; 3 Paul James, 2 Huw Bennett, 1 Ryan Bevington.
Subs: 16 Lloyd Burns, 17 Scott Andrews, 18 Alun-Wyn Jones, 19 Josh Turnbull, 20 Tavis Knoyle, 21 Rhys Priestland, 22 Scott Williams.