Ospreys wing Tom Williams, returning to full fitness, earns his first Wales U20 cap for Wales’ World Rugby U20 Championship opener against Ireland tomorrow (Tuesday 7 June, Manchester City Academy Stadium). He starts on the right wing with Joe Thomas moving to outside centre in place of Owen Watkin and Harri Millard switching to inside centre.
On the bench, Liam Belcher, Seb Davies and Josh Macleod also return to full fitness to take up places in the matchday 23, Macleod set to earn his first Wales U20 cap if he comes off the bench.
Strange said, “We are pleased to be able to have such consistency in our selection from our Six Nations campaign. We’ve had a great period of training and preparation and the players are now really looking forward to their first match tomorrow.
“We know it will take a real team effort to do well against Ireland. After beating them in Dublin, they produced some impressive performances to beat England away and Scotland at home. We are focussing on our strengths and on our own performance. We know that if we play to the best of our ability and we stick to our principles of playing attractive rugby, we will be a competitive force.
“We have been working hard to keep making small improvements and our togetherness as a squad has continued to grow. We want to express that and keep the excitement going on the pitch starting with tomorrow’s match.
Our aim is to stay focussed on our performance and on being the best we can be.”
Wales U20 v Ireland can be watched on S4C tomorrow and Strange is hoping there’ll be some great support in Manchester too.
“There is a great buzz around Manchester, the facilities at the grounds are fantastic, and it would be great to have as much vocal support as possible for the boys.”
CLICK HERE for full match and ticket info:www.worldrugby.org/u20
Wales U20 v Ireland
Rhun Williams (Cardiff Blues); Tom Williams (Ospreys), Joe Thomas (Ospreys), Harri Millard (Cardiff Blues), Keelan Giles (Ospreys); Daniel Jones (Scarlets), Reuben Morgan-Williams (Ospreys); Corey Domachowski (Cardiff Blues), Dafydd Hughes (Scarlets), Dillon Lewis (Cardiff Blues), Shane Lewis-Hughes (Cardiff Blues), Adam Beard (Ospreys), Tom Phillips (captain, Scarlets), Shaun Evans (Scarlets), Harrison Keddie (Newport Gwent Dragons)
Replacements: Liam Belcher (Cardiff Blues), Rhys Fawcett (Scarlets), Leon Brown (Newport Gwent Dragons), Seb Davies (Cardiff Blues), Josh Macleod (Scarlets), Declan Smith (Scarlets), Jarrod Evans (Cardiff Blues), Billy McBryde (Scarlets)
Wales U20 select consistent side
Wales U20 head coach Jason Strange has made just one change and two positional to the side that clinched the Under 20 Six Nations Grand Slam by beating 35-6 Colwyn Bay in March.
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