Wales U20 name side for 5th place play off

Wales have named their team for their World Rugby U20 Championship 5th Place play off against Australia in Viadana tomorrow.

Wales make three changes form the side that beat Ireland 22-12 in their semi final. Fly half Jarrod Evans and centre Garyn Smith are both out injured, meaning that Daniel Jones comes in at stand off and Joe Thomas comes in at outside centre.

The final change for the game against Australia, who beat Scotland 22-12 in their semi final, is at hooker, where Ryan Elias starts ahead of Liam Belcher. The two hookers having been alternating all tournament.

Speaking ahead of the game, Wales U20 Coach co-ordinator, Allan Lewis, said:

“The team has progressed so much during the tournament that we didn’t want to make too many changes for this last game, other than the forced changes due to injury and at hooker, where Ryan and Liam (Belcher) have alternated in the starting XV.

“We are delighted to be playing Australia in what is a big game in terms of final tournament positions. Other than Japan, we have played only Six Nations games this season so we are thrilled to be able to have a crack at a southern hemisphere side.

“Having lost our opening two games, a good performance and result on Saturday would be a pleasing outcome from the remainder of the tournament. I feel it’s going to be a high scoring game. Our young coaches encourage an open, ball in hand game and from what I’ve seen of Australia, they like to play a wide game too.”

“A number of the players from both sides played each other at Under 18 level in Wales two years ago which we won 26-12, scoring four tries, so our players can take some confidence from that. What is key is that we concentrate on our performance. If we continue to progress as a team then tries will come and the result will take care of itself.”

Wales U20 v Australia U20 – World Rugby U20 Championship 5th Place Play Off – Stadio Luigi Zaffanella, Viadan, 14.00 kick off.

Wales U20 XV:

15 Dafydd Howells (Ospreys/Neath)

14 Elis-Wyn Benham (Blues/Cardiff)

13 Joe Thomas (Ospreys/Swansea)

12 Owen Watkin (Ospreys/Bridgend)

11 Joshua Adams (Scarlets/Llanelli)

10 Daniel Jones (Scarlets/Carmarthen)

9 Tomos Williams (Blues/Pontypridd)

1 Luke Garrett (Dragons/Cross Keys)

2 Ryan Elias (Scarlets/Carmarthen)

3 Dillon Lewis (Blues/Pontypridd)

4 Seb Davies (Blues/Pontypridd)

5 Adam Beard (Ospreys/Aberavon)

6 Tom Phillips (Scarlets/Llanelli)

7 Ollie Griffiths (c) (Dragons/Newport)

8 Harrison Keddie (Dragons/Ebbw Vale)


16 Torin Myhill (Scarlets/Llanelli)

17 Keagan Bale (Dragons/Cross Keys)

18 Joe Jones (Blues/Cardiff)

19 Lee Taylor (Carmarthen Quins)

20 Liam Belcher (Blues/Pontypridd)

21 Kieran Hardy (Scarlets/Carmarthen)

22 Lloyd Lewis (Dragons/Newport)

23 Barney Nightingale (Drgaons /Newport)

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