Home Rugby Holmes & Young Set For Six Nations Debuts As Wales Name Team For Italy

Holmes & Young Set For Six Nations Debuts As Wales Name Team For Italy

Wales have made wholesale changes to the side which beat France last weekend for their upcoming clash with Italy in Rome in Round 2 of the Guinness Six Nations. 

Warren Gatland’s side will be looking to make it two wins from two before heading into the break.

Jonathan Davies captains Wales for the first time as he makes his 70th appearance in red and will become the country’s 137th captain.

He will partner Owen Watkin in midfield as Aled Davies and Dan Biggar have been named at scrum-half and out-half, respectively.

Wales Team Italy Six Nations

Jonah Holmes, who is making his first Six Nations appearance, starts on the right wing as Liam Williams starts at fullback and Josh Adams takes his spot on the left wing.

Up front, Warren Gatland has gone with a front-row of Nicky Smith, Elliot Dee and Samson Lee while Jake Ball and Adam Beard pack down in the second-row.

In the back-row, Josh Navidi moves to number eight, Aaron Wainwright starts at blindside flanker and Six Nations debutant Thomas Young comes in at openside.

“We have made a number of changes this weekend but have picked what we think is a very exciting team that still has huge experience throughout it,” Gatland said.

Warren Gatland Wales Team Italy Six Nations

“We have made a similar number of changes to what we did last year, but it is all about opportunity for these players.

“We have had a squad of 31 training together, replicating the Rugby World Cup and it is important they get game-time.

“It is a great opportunity for Jon (Davies) as captain. He has a huge amount of experience, is a great leader and it is a great honour for him to lead his country.

“Italy will be hurting after last weekend but they are a different proposition in Rome. They are an experienced team themselves and they will be looking to put things right on the pitch after their opening defeat.”

Wales Team (Saturday, February 9 KO 16.45 GMT)
15. Liam Williams (52 Caps)
14. Jonah Holmes (1 Cap)
13. Jonathan Davies (69 Caps) (Capt)
12. Owen Watkin (9 Caps)
11. Josh Adams (7 Caps)
10. Dan Biggar (66 Caps)
9. Aled Davies (12 Caps)
1. Nicky Smith (24 Caps)
2. Elliot Dee (14 Caps)
3. Samson Lee (39 Caps)
4. Jake Ball (29 Caps)
5. Adam Beard (9 Caps)
6. Aaron Wainwright (4 Caps)
7. Thomas Young (2 Caps)
8. Josh Navidi (12 Caps)

16. Ryan Elias (6 Caps)
17. Wyn Jones (11 Caps)
18. Dillon Lewis (8 Caps)
19 Alun Wyn Jones (121 Caps)
20. Ross Moriarty (27 Caps)
21. Gareth Davies (37 Caps)
22. Gareth Anscombe (22 Caps)
23. Hallam Amos (18 Caps)

About Sean McMahon

Sean is Head of Pundit Arena Rugby. Contact him on Twitter here: