Home Rugby Selecting The Starting XV Wales Should Deploy Against South Africa In June

Selecting The Starting XV Wales Should Deploy Against South Africa In June

SWANSEA, WALES - OCTOBER 07: Scarlets' Samson Lee takes to the field during the Guinness Pro14 Round 6 match between Ospreys and Scarlets at Liberty Stadium on October 7, 2017 in Swansea, Wales. (Photo by Ashley Crowden - CameraSport via Getty Images)

Wales take on South Africa on June 2, before heading to Argentina the following week to take on the Pumas on successive weekends. 

The three tests represent a great opportunity for Warren Gatland to continue to develop depth in his squad prior to next year’s World Cup. With the Wales coach set to rest his British and Irish Lions, the summer tests represent a great chance for some fringe players to really put their hands up.

With a focus on building strength in depth, here’s the side we would like to see Warren Gatland pick for the clash with South Africa.

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15. Dan Evans

The 29 year-old Ospreys full-back has consistently been excellent for his region over the past three or four seasons but has mystifyingly been ignored by Warren Gatland.

The tour would be a perfect opportunity to give Evans the chance to show his stuff.

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14. Josh Adams

The 23-year-old has enjoyed a superb season, topping the Premiership try scoring charts with 12 touchdowns despite appearing in a struggling Warriors team.

Made a solid debut against Scotland and despite struggling in the air against England, the Hendy product has shown enough in his two tests to suggest he has a big future at test level.

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13. Owen Watkin

The 21-year-old made his international bow off the bench against Australia in the autumn and has impressed in his five appearances since then, including an excellent display against Italy in the Six Nations.

Has a massive international future ahead of him.

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12. Hadleigh Parkes

Parkes has really caught the eye since making his international debut against South Africa in December.

A strong ball carrier who consistently gets over the gain-line and boasts a good off-loading game. Parkes does the basics incredibly well and the New Zealand born-star has been a key figure in the Scarlets superb European campaign.

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11. Steff Evans

The 23-year-old enjoyed a fine Six Nations after a tough Autumn campaign.

Scored tries against Scotland and Ireland, and was a threat in attack whilst also being solid in defence. Evans deserves to start.

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10. Rhys Patchell

The 24-year-old playmaker has been a key figure in the Scarlets’ outstanding twelve months with his creativity and ability to open up opposition defences.

Was excellent against Scotland before being harshly dropped after enduring a tough afternoon against England.

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9. Gareth Davies

A constant threat around the fringes, the powerful 27-year-old also runs superb supporting angles and is a master at scoring opportunist tries.

Was good in patches during the Six Nations, and with Rhys Webb’s move to Toulon in the summer, the Scarlets half-back is set to be Wales’ No 9 for quite sometime.

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1. Rob Evans

The prop is enjoying another superb season with both club and country.

An excellent scrummager who is superb in the loose with his constant carries and outstanding handling skills, the 25-year-old has matured into one of the best loose-heads in Europe.

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2. Elliot Dee

Made his Wales debut against Georgia in November and has impressed in his seven caps to date, including a fine performance against Italy during the Six Nations.

A strong ball carrier with a fantastic work-rate who is improving in the set-piece. The 24-year-old is a really exciting talent.

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3. Samson Lee

After a couple of injury-interrupted seasons, the 38-time capped prop has enjoyed a fine season.

A cornerstone of a Scarlets scrum which has been outstanding, the super scrummager has also shown nice touches in the loose and has impressed on his return to the national team.

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4. Bradley Davies

The experienced lock has been in fine form recently and gives Wales a much needed go-forward impact with his powerful ball-carrying as well as his grunt at the scrum.

His physicality and aggression will be important against a physical ‘Bok pack.

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5. Corey Hill

An accomplished line-out operator with great hands who is really effective in the loose, the Dragons skipper has been superb for his region and shone for Wales during the Six Nations.

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6. Aaron Shingler

Superb in the line-out and tremendous in the loose with his powerful ball-carrying, excellent off-loading skills and linking work, the 30-year-old has been outstanding for both club and country this season.

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7. James Davies

The 27-year-old finally made his international debut against Italy last month and his excellence at the breakdown and superb linking work allied to his sublime handling skills, mean ‘Cubby Boi’ must be given more opportunities to showcase his enormous talent.

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8. Ross Moriarty

Considering he had played very little rugby prior to the Six Nations due to a serious back injury, the 23 year-old put in a decent shift for his country as they finished in second place.

The powerful 16st 10lb’s ability to play at eight should be really useful come next year’s World Cup.

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Replacements

16. Ryan Elias.

17.Wyn Jones.

18. Tomas Francis.

19. Seb Davies.

20. Josh Navidi.

21. Tomos Williams.

22.Owen Williams.

23.Hallam Amos.

 

About Hefin Jones

Hefin is a sports anorak with a love for cricket, boxing and football but a particular penchant for rugby. English teacher, Journalism student and Scarlets fan. Attempt to tweet trilingually @hefrhys.