Sports

The new-look Wales rugby squad likely to be named in two weeks

Despite Wayne Pivac being without ten Lions and a number of injured players, he is still spoilt for choice when it comes to selecting his squad for Wales’ summer Tests against Canada and Argentina.

The strength in depth at his disposal is really encouraging, with a number of uncapped youngsters vying with established internationals.

With three Tests, you are looking at a squad of up to around 35 players – 16 backs and 19 forwards.

So here’s what the Kiwi coach might come up with when he makes his announcement the week after next.

BACK THREE –Johnny McNicoll,Ioan Lloyd,Jonah Holmes,Mat Protheroe, Owen Lane

This is the department hardest hit by Lions calls, with Liam Williams, Josh Adams and Louis Rees-Zammit all heading for South Africa.

That, in turn, provides opportunity for fringe figures, who have been biding their time, along with fresh faces.

Pivac will know everything there is to know about the ultra-reliable Leigh Halfpenny, so he may give him a summer off to re-charge his batteries.

That could then create the scope to try out an uncapped youngster.

Of those, Mat Protheroe is at the front of the queue, having come back to Wales to put his hand up for international duty and done just that, with Tom Rogers and Rio Dyer other options, along with the experienced Hallam Amos.

CENTRES – Willis Halaholo, Keiran Williams, Owen Watkin, Nick Tompkins, Aneurin Owen

You’ve got a similar situation here in terms of whether to include a vastly experienced campaigner, in the shape of Jonathan Davies.

With so many centres pushing for selection and Davies’ qualities already well known, Pivac may choose to run the rule over a couple of untried talents instead.

If so, then Keiran Williams and Aneurin Owen have staked a big claim, with Ben Thomas another contender.



Aneurin Owen of the Dragons

OUTSIDE-HALVES – Callum Sheedy, Jarrod Evans

With Dan Biggar away with the Lions, you will see two 10s in a rich vein of form – Sheedy and Evans – vying for a starting spot.

Pivac could include the gifted Sam Costelow to give him some senior squad experience.

But with the versatile Ioan Lloyd able to cover fly-half, he may go for just the two specialists.

Who should start at outside-half for Wales? Let us know your selection in the comments below

SCRUM-HALVES – Tomos Williams, Kieran Hardy, Dane Blacker

But for untimely injuries, Tomos Williams could well have been heading out to South Africa, as he is arguably the most naturally talented of the scrum-half crop.

So he will be looking to fire on all cylinders in case a replacement is required.

The summer series will also provide Kieran Hardy with more Test time, while his Scarlets colleague Dane Blacker could be an uncapped inclusion if he recovers from a foot injury in time.

LOOSE-HEAD PROPS – Nicky Smith, Rhys Carre, Corey Domachowski

You can see Pivac going for one experienced figure, one with a year or so of Test rugby behind him and one uncapped player here.

Smith might just edge out Rob Evans as the seasoned loosehead, with Rhys Carre the man in the middle.

Then it’s down to a choice between Corey Domachowski and Gareth Thomas, with the Cardiff Blues man maybe getting the nod after a really forceful season.

HOOKERS- Elliot Dee, Ryan Elias, Ifan Phillips

The last time Ken Owens was absent, during the autumn, hooker proved to be a bit of a problem.

So the hope is that his deputies will have a happier time this summer.

Elliot Dee has re-established himself as next in the queue after Ken, with Ryan Elias probably ahead of Sam Parry as the other capped option.

If there is to be a newbie on board, then it could well be the moment for Ifan Phillips to follow in the footsteps of his father Kevin, on the back of a season where he has impressed with his handling skills, pace and lineout throwing.



Ospreys hooker Ifan Phillips

TIGHT-HEAD PROPS – Tomas Francis, Leon Brown, Dillon Lewis

Plenty of options here, with Dillon Lewis back to fitness and form to potentially join Francis and Brown in the mix.

Samson Lee has had his injury issues this season, so has slipped out of the reckoning a bit.

It could yet be the chance for the Scarlets-bound Will Griff John to win that elusive first cap, but getting into the squad is the initial challenge for him amid the competition.

SECOND ROWS – Cory Hill (capt), Adam Beard, Will Rowlands, Seb Davies

This department will more than likely feature the squad captain, with Cory Hill’s leadership so valued.

There is also a chance for rare Test starts for the likes of Rowlands and Davies, with Alun Wyn Jones having a certain other job to perform and Jake Ball having returned to Australia.

The question really is how many second rows does Pivac go for?

If it’s five, then you are looking at one of a trio of uncapped lock contenders in Ben Carter, Rhys Davies and Morgan Jones.

BACK ROW – Ross Moriarty, Aaron Wainwright, Josh Navidi, James Botham, Jac Morgan.

There is so much choice here, you hardly know where to begin.

It will be good to see Ross Moriarty in the Wales team for the first time since March 2020, while the hope is that Josh Navidi will also be fit to play a part after his shoulder dislocation, especially as he would surely be the next cab off the rank with the Lions.

As for the uncapped contenders, Jac Morgan surely has to be involved after his outstanding season.

But you’ve also got a string of others in Tommy Reffell, Morgan Morris, Taine Basham, Dan Thomas, Will Griffiths and James Ratti, while the one-cap Ollie Griffiths has so much to offer if he can just stay injury-free.

...

ALSO READ  Zack Wheeler suffers freak injury putting on pants
Tags

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button
Close
eskisehir escort -

jojobet.live

- redwin1.club - jetbahis.contact -
retrobet
- tempobeteskisehir escort -

jojobet.live

- redwin1.club - jetbahis.contact -
retrobet
- tempobet